BU Film School

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

FT 706 Lecture: Tuesday, October 7

Repetition/responding exercises
Notes about David - sneakers, long-sleeved shirt, short hair - just showered? intent.

Notes about exchange -- Sydney Pollack -- record first take, every take matters, no "warmups". questioning air of "You're wearing that?" "Well, shyah!" -- obvious. Need to be more articulate in expressing emotions -- but, unlike other pairs, did talk about how we felt.

Dave (D-man) / Christine - repeating exercise. Dave doing more adjusting than Christine. More repeating -- listening better.

Responding -- Dave kind of issuing a challenge, Christine not choosing to take the bait.

Little bit of frustration, but not really going anywhere -- both holding back? am I doing this right?

Nate/Christine. Nate tring to question, get a reaction -- Christine frustrated.

Erin/Bob. Started out friendly, Bob getting progressively insistent, angry -- answer not satisfied. Erin -- not sure of why situation ...

Started friendly -- Bob getting insistent, backing Erin into corner. Erin unsure. Bob changed tone -- realizing something -- then serious again. Didn't want Erin to run away. Bob laughs, smiles.

Listening and acting
1) listening exercise.
2) urge to tap-dance
3) acting is not about the words
4) acting is about the other person
5) you do the work, not the words

To listen, have to not know what they're going to say, have to care. listen with our eyes, our upbringing, our gut -- listen with who you are.

Acting -- being private in public. Self-consciousness -- not "don't focus on audience" (like saying "don't think about a purple elephant"). Focus on the other person.

Feeling came from what he did with the words (not the words themselves).

Bus stop notes
Bus stop exercise. Three chairs are bench. Say name, enter, wait for bus.

David -- looking around for bus, looks mostly out at audience.

Dave -- yawns. looks around. why?

Nathan -- watching for bus. staring mostly up street. fidgeting.

Nathan, take two -- steady gaze -- patiently waiting -- not in hurry. calm. Looked other way -- believed in world. Other students -- almost as if he was willing the bus to come. What was he looking at?

Waiting for the bus and look back behind you.

Mike -- jogs to stop, takes off sweatshirt, fumbles with bag -- late. really unorganized.

CeCe -- cool, chilling, relaxed. takes out book -- not particularly concerned as to when bus gets there. More involved with book than with bus.

Choice-making exercise. Nathan wanted to show us more about bus stop he was at.

Choices. Where to sit? Middle one was dirty -- learned more about bench.

Believe Nathan looked back at something. Reveal your world to us.

Dave checked his watch. Checking watch is making a choice -- must also commit to the choice.

Everything you do that is not explicit in the script is a choice. The difference between good and bad acting is the process of making choices. The difference between good and great choices is the quality of the choices and your ability to commit to them.

Next time, bus stop. show choices for four things:

-- moment before
-- personalize your props
-- environment
-- time

Use 2 props, one of which must be food. No Walkman, no sunglasses, no cellphone.

Environment is never neutral. Almost always aid or obstacle.

Act of making choices is act of making world specific to us. Art cannot be too specific. Specific choices are good choices.

Moment before -- where did you come from? Important in film -- short scenes shot out of sequence. 1 minute before, 1 hour before. Can have emotional quality.

Time is never neutral.

Should be able to answer questions (what time is it? how do you get to where you're going? how many people are waiting? etc.)


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