Directing note 67: Never express actions in terms of feelings

Don’t give actors undoable emotional directives such as: “Be disappointed.” You are almost guaranteed an insincere result.
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An excellent way of expressing an action, however, is to prompt the actor to focus on how they want the other person to feel.
Paul Newman once said the best direction he ever got was: “Crowd the guy.”

Notes on Directing

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1 comment
  1. One of the easiest ways to “translate” a result-direction such as disappointment is to flip it into a goal/objective/verb. So you would ask Actor A to make Actor B feel disappointed.

    Its not perfect – but it can work. “Make them feel happy” “Make them sad” “Make them get angry at you” “Make them feel sexy”

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