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Old 03-22-2011, 03:45 PM   #1
andy15
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Pschological factors of directing actors

Hi,

I'm writing a report at the moment on the psychological factors of directing actors, and I thought it'd be interesting to hear what you guys have to say on the topic? If you have time, I'd appreciate if you discuss the questions below, it'd be great help!

How important is the atmosphere on set for your production?

Explain the importance of the first time you meet your actors, and what they make of you.

Can it be difficult to trust your actors at times?

Is it important for your actors and crew to familiarise with each other?

If there is a disruption on set, how can this affect the actor’s performance?

What productions have you had a directing role in (link if possible)?

Thanks,

Andy
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:40 PM   #2
2001 Productions
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy15 View Post
How important is the atmosphere on set for your production?
Not certain I understand this question. If by "atmosphere" you mean how friendly or tense the set is, I've never seen anything positive result from an unfriendly set. I don't care what the situation is, there's no reason to behave like a jackass, ever, whether actor or director.

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Explain the importance of the first time you meet your actors, and what they make of you.
The first time I meet my actors is during auditions, so that's pretty important. What they make of me I can't say, but I suppose if they didn't trust me they wouldn't accept the role.

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Can it be difficult to trust your actors at times?
Not if you've cast well.

Quote:
Is it important for your actors and crew to familiarise with each other?
Another rather ambiguous question. What do you mean by "familiarize"? Individual actors use different methods of preparation; some are outgoing, some are introspective. Neither method is better or worse than the other.

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If there is a disruption on set, how can this affect the actor’s performance?
Depends on the actor. If the performance is compromised due to a disruption, we cut and roll again.

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What productions have you had a directing role in (link if possible)?
http://2001productions.com/credits.aspx
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:11 PM   #3
knightly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy15 View Post
How important is the atmosphere on set for your production?
We have strict courtesy guidelines on our sets to keep a rhythm and flow going and to make everyone helping out feel equally respected and appreciated. The Producers and Directors always lead by example... Sir/Maam are always used when referring to the cast and crew and voices are never raised. This is fundamental to a productive set with cast/crew who return production after production.

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Explain the importance of the first time you meet your actors, and what they make of you.
The first impression is always the most important.

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Originally Posted by andy15 View Post
Can it be difficult to trust your actors at times?
Nope... casting isn't just finding a fit for the character, it's finding a fit for the set as well.

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Originally Posted by andy15 View Post
Is it important for your actors and crew to familiarise with each other?
This happens in the normal course of things.

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Originally Posted by andy15 View Post
If there is a disruption on set, how can this affect the actor’s performance?
We try not to let it happen. My crews are very conscious of the difficulties actors are going through... most come from the theatre world.

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What productions have you had a directing role in (link if possible)?
1997 - Hassegeschichte
2005 - Average Joe - (Partial Edit - WIP)
2006 - Death Bed
2007 - 9th Life
2007 - French Onion
2007 - The Stream, The Cave, Jim and Dave
2007 - Scare Tactics
2007 - Heinz "Top This" Commercial
2008 - Sharks
2008 - Extra Credit
2009 - Blaze of Glory
2009 - Scavengers
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:45 PM   #4
Uranium City
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Quote:
How important is the atmosphere on set for your production?
Extremely. The only drama I like to see is in front of the camera. The best way to get the best results from everyone involved is to foster a positive atmosphere.

Quote:
Explain the importance of the first time you meet your actors, and what they make of you.
You can learn a lot meeting an actor for the first time...how they've dressed for the audition, for instance, can tell you a lot about other choices they might make. How they shake your hand and where they look can tell you things, too. Plus the basic notion of physicality...if they have the right look and frame to embody the role...can be found out from a first impression. Plus they can tell if they want to work with me.

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Is it important for your actors and crew to familiarise with each other?
I don't know if I can answer this, because it just seems to always happen. I don't know if it is important, it just happens. You cram that many people together for long hours making something cool that everyone believes in and you're bound to grow close to one another.

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Can it be difficult to trust your actors at times?
I think it's far more common for an actor to not trust me, to wonder where I'm going with something, to be confused at my master plan for the film. I never have a problem trusting actors that I've cast, though. I like to reuse actors when I can because of the trust built up in whatever prior production.

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If there is a disruption on set, how can this affect the actor’s performance?
If there is a technical disruption during a scene where an actor is keyed up and ready to pounce, and the production has to pause, it can disrupt their process. They'll often want to take time to build themselves where they need to be again. If there is a personality conflict or ego problem on set, it can affect an actor's performance negatively, especially if they have little prior acting experience. Seasoned actors know how to rise above disruptions, usually. I try to make sure we've prepped everything adequately so when cameras roll we have few disruptions. I have a pretty good verbal shorthand with my crew so we can take care of technical issues quickly and without disturbing the cast.

You can see my body of work at http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3601042/ and http://uraniumcityfilms.com/Films.html

Last edited by Uranium City; 03-22-2011 at 08:47 PM.
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