Saturday, March 26, 2011

What would you do

...on camera (or stage, but I'm going to concentrate on camera). First off, for those of you thinking an actor should gratefully accept any role and do whatever the director wants -on set- until reaching A-list status, you are wrong. Well, at least as far as the second part goes. One should always be grateful. And one should never sacrifice their morals.

This goes beyond the standard nudity example which is complex just by itself. If the producers reach as certain dollar amount, do the clothes come off? What about implied nudity? Just your butt? Lot to think about. Highly recommend deciding before the powers that be ask for your decision.

Two off topic comments about nudity.
  1. If it is not on camera, it does not need to be exposed. Even if it is your chest and your bare back is on camera.
  2. There is no reason to suddenly write your clothes out of the script. So don't be pressured out of them. If you're willing to do it, fine. Just make them renegotiate first. And charge more than you usually would. After all, most places charge extra for rush jobs.

So, besides nudity, what else should an actor consider?

  • Would you do a scene wearing just underwear?
  • What about underwear designed with the opposite sex in mind?
  • How about clothing with intimacy in mind? This includes everything from the lingerie stores at the mall to kinky leather bondage stuff.
  • Would you portray a gay character with make out/sex scenes?
  • Would you do those scenes if the character was straight?
  • Are you willing to smoke? Herbal cigarettes? E-cigarettes?
  • Are you willing to alter your appearance? I mean in such a way that your current headshots won't match your appearance for the next six months.

I suppose there might be other things to consider, but you get the idea. Notice how all the bullet points are things that cannot be faked. That's why drinking is not on there. You can take apple juice and call it beer or pee or alien mind control fluid. You can even stretch artistic license to the limit and call it apple juice. But you cannot stick a ballpoint pen in your mouth and call it a cigarette.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Charlie Sheen

Charlie Sheen is merely the latest in the line of actors who have said or done something to make their publicists really earn their money. However, his case is particularly bothersome. Why?

  1. He is a series regular on an in production series. A series that has been put on hiatus due to his antics. And those antics must be pretty bad. Perhaps more than we realize. After all, shutting down production is a major decision. Not one that's made simply because the star called a producer "Mr. Poopy Pants".
  2. He is completely unrepentant. Sure, a lot of the "repentance" of the others might be PR motivated. But at least they are not going out of their way to claim it is everyone else's fault.
  3. He has gone on the biggest ego trip since...well, at least he's not some general who is in a position to command his army to invade a neighboring country. Demanding a doubling of his salary? Being tired of pretending not to be great? Hmm, I'm thinking Exhibit A of drugs do mess with your brain.
  4. I doubt he is getting the help he needs. He claims to have been cured of any drug addictions. I suppose that is possible. I am not an expert in this area. But, like I mentioned, I have my doubts. #1 through #3 do not seem like the actions of someone trying to clean up his life.

Is Charlie's acting career over? He is not dead (literally) so a comeback is possible. However, it has been seriously wounded and he has not been taking care of healing. In fact, he has been aggravating the wounds. Charlie might be the greatest actor in the world. He might even be a wonderful person, under better circumstances, to be around. But if I were producing, I would not feel comfortable having him on my set. I would be asking "Is getting Charlie to sign on important enough to risk a breakdown in the middle of shooting?".