You are large and contain multitudes, but you only get called in for one type of role. What gives?!
Tony has something to say about it in this week’s BLOG.
MALE STUDENT: A thing that I have an issue with is that I over-analyze the character and then I end up limiting what the possibilities are.
ANTHONY: Well at least you know that. So just stop doing that. I think the fact that you can recognize that is how you’re going to deconstruct that challenge for yourself. Here’s the thing. How old are you?
A: You’re way overthinking it. You’re always going to play within your type. None of you are going to play an 80-year-old hunchback with a French accent who hasn’t eaten for 80 days. This is the a-ha. You don’t have to worry about finding the character, developing the character. In our London school I got asked by a woman- she was like, “Well I used to play all these characters.” I was like, “How old are you?” She said “Nineteen.” I was like, “Of course, because in high school, they don’t have real 80-year-olds in high school acting class, so you have to play these roles that are so diametrically opposed to who you already are.”
All of our developing minds think that acting is about creating something. It’s not. As a 20-year-old, what kind of things do you go out for: surfer, skate guy, guy next door, maybe dangerous kid, kid you want to bring home to Mom, kid you don’t want to bring home to Mom. See what I’m saying? It’s all you. It’s not a big character stretch. How would YOU do it? It’s that easy. What’s not easy is the receiving of the moments, listening, and then taking the hit. That’s it. That’s what we’ve got to work on.
Nobody taught me that when I was your age either. I didn’t even understand that Tony was supposed to be in it so I would play ideas of who I thought characters were. I was obsessed with Tom Hanks in the 90’s. So I would always do it the way I thought Tom Hanks would play this character. Talk about crazy acting. You guys, don’t overthink it. You’re all going in for your type. As you progress in your career, you might start to get things that are like, “Oh God, I never really explored that before.” But by then you’re going to have the tools available to you to do it. Good to know.