Published: June 1999
Directing film or television is a high-stakes occupation - the white water rafting of entertainment jobs. It captures your full attention at every moment, calling on you to commit every resource and stretch yourself to the limit. But for many directors, the excitement they feel about a new project tightens into anxiety when it comes to working with actors. "Directing Actors" is a method for establishing creative, collaborative relationships with actors, getting the most out of rehearsals, troubleshooting poor performances, and giving directions that are briefer and easier to follow. The following issues are discussed: what constitutes a good performance; what actors want from a director; what directors do wrong; script analysis and preparation; how actors work; and the director/actor relationship. "Directing Actors" is the first book of its kind. Judith investigates in detail the sometimes painful, often frustrating, but potentially exhilarating relationship between actor and director. It provides simple, practical tools that directors and actors can use immediately - and takes the reader on a journey through the complexities of the creative process itself.
Although one chapter is entitled 'Result Direction and Quick Fixes', the tools and suggestions of the book are now superficial band-aids or facile jargon; they are radical excursions into the perhaps most misunderstood artistic collaboration - that of director with actor. Judith Weston brings to this book twenty years of professional acting and nine years of teaching Acting for Directors. Her students include academy Awards and Emmy winning directors, writers and producers of studio and independent feature films, television episodes and MOWs. The first book to directly address directors about working with actors.