At one time, I placed actors and actresses on a pedestal. And maybe I should have, but I have learned that they are no different from the rest of us, in the sense of human desire.
They are mostly hardworking, dedicated, and talented individuals. Like us, they have bosses, belong to unions and go on strike. Unlike most of us, however, they compete for their next role and leave behind their work of entertainment for audiences to enjoy for many years, whereas we are forgotten shortly after we leave a job.
Acting is an art that has always impressed me. Having participated as an extra, in a movie with major stars, was enough to cause me to wonder about actors. When filming, we were instructed not to converse with the actors as they become the characters they seek to portray. They learn the traits, habits, manner and characteristics of the character, who probably lived in another time. It was impressive to watch them become these characters.
Actors are individuals who place us on a scene, a re-enactment that could have occurred in the present time or centuries ago. I have heard that in some intense cases, some actors become the characters they portray. Like one major star once said, “I’m coming down with somebody.”
If possible, you should take the opportunity to meet an actor coming off the stage or from a movie set and ask how he managed to transform himself into a character he portrayed. He would probably say, smiling, “Oh! It’s just a job ... the director was watching me.”
It is almost necessary to take a course in how to watch performances of these artists, whether onstage or on the screen. The successful artists put their soul into their performances. They turn on their talents, walk into the personalities of characters and make them come alive while you sit on the edge of your seat.
Why is it that I come away from a certain performance in a movie believing that I have been there or have lived there? Why is it that I long to see certain movies over and over again, just to see certain scenes? With the members of the cast long gone, it is the skill in their art of acting that did it.
Of course, we all are actors in a sense of thinking; it’s just that a very few have those hidden talents that make actors and actresses. There are those who merely need a job, and in my view, they do what comes naturally in the art of acting. They complete one movie, forget it and move onto the next one. Yet some of their movies live on forever. The best example I can think of is the classic movie “Gone with the Wind.”
Many new actors train constantly in special programs in colleges and other places to improve their profession. There are some who have years of professional training, yet they strive even more for perfection. There are some who never had any formal training and were the most successful. For example: Clark Gable, Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. They definitely left their mark.
Oh! By the way, if you check out the Internet, you’ll notice there are many acting jobs open for anyone who may appear for an audition. You never know ... you may be the one.