IFH 154: How to Direct the Character, Not the Actor with Mark Travis



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This week I have the pleasure of having directing coach Mark Travis on the show. I was introduced to him after I watched his stellar workshop Hollywood Film Directing, which he co-instructed with Gil Bettman (he’ll be on the show soon). Mark Travis is the author of the best-selling books

  • The Film Director’s Bag of Tricks: Get What You Want from Actors and Writers 
  • Directing Feature Films: Learn How to Get Authentic Performances from Actors!

Mark Travis has developed a new way of directing actors called The Travis Technique. Mark teaches directors how to direct the character (not the actor) in order to create instantaneous authentic performances, even on tight schedules and tiny budgets. Here’s a bit on The Travis Technique.

Acting is too often just pretending. And most directing is demanding and controlling and result oriented.  And consequently, the final product suffers. But it doesn’t have to be that way. When you use The Travis Techniqueyou can achieve instantaneous and authentic performances from actors that are deeply felt by audiences.  The Travis Technique is an organic approach to directing actors that are guaranteed to create authentic characters and performances by shifting the focus from directing the actor to directing the character.

Mark Travis first created his techniques out of the necessity to generate the most authentic performances within actors under a tight schedule and often an even tighter budget.  In the last 20-years, the Travis Technique has grown and is now used by some of the best directors, actors and writers in Hollywood and the international film market. Mark has taught The Travis Technique to students all over the world in over 50 film schools.

When actors, directors, and writers use the Travis Technique, it’s not just a performance anymore.  It becomes REAL!   The Travis Technique creates organic authenticity in every performance and under all circumstances. This translates immediately onto the screen and gains enormous attention for the director, actor, and writer.

Recommended by Hollywood’s top brass: Mark Rydell, Art Seidelman, Randal Kleiser, George Tillman, Asaad Kelada, Jan Eliasberg, John Badham and other A-listers. For over 20-years Mark Travis has been sharing his award-winning techniques on writing, acting and directing worldwide.

Most directors make a critical mistake: They direct only the actor, not the character. And that is just one of the many techniques directors must master.  They also must learn how to expertly stage scenes, understand exactly how camera angles intensify or diminish a shot amongst hundreds of other skills to become a renowned, in-demand, and working director.

Winner of over 30 directorial awards, teaching internationally in 50 prestigious film schools, for the past 20-years Mark Travis’ workshops and seminars have covered the entire filmmaking process including all stages of preparation, pre-production, production, and post-production.  Mark has been instrumental in launching successful directorial careers in the US and internationally.

Sought out by the most experienced directors, Mark now teaches his signature Travis Technique: a simple, immediate, and powerful Directing Tool, directors can use to achieve instantaneous authentic performances that translate brilliantly onto the screen.

Enjoy my conversation with Mark Travis.

Alex Ferrari 2:20
So guys today, we have on the show Mark Travis he is a directing guru, and there's not many of those guys around. You know, we have a lot of screenwriting gurus like Michael Haig and Chris Hogan, authors who really concentrate on the screenwriting aspect of things, but we don't have a lot that actually focus on the directorial aspect of filmmaking. So when I was like kind of just looking around the internet, I came across his DVD set called Hollywood film directing. And Mark is responsible for creating something called the Travis technique. And we go into pretty detailed explanation of what it is in the interview. But just a quick overview of what the Travis technique is, is the ability to direct the character as opposed to directing the actor. And when Mark explains it, it's it's pretty revolutionary as a director, having the freedom and the ability to to just talk to the character as opposed to talking to the actor, playing the character. And I know it sounds a bit confusing. A mark will definitely break it down for you in this epic interview. Now there's interview, those go on for a couple hours. So this is a long interview, but it is chock full of knowledge bombs, Mark brings the goods and really gives us chess a ton and ton of great information. So if you're interested in directing, or learning how to work with actors, or just want to get the most out of your actors, perk up your ears, boys and girls, because this one's going to be a doozy. And if you guys wait all the way till the end, I will be giving you a coupon code for a new course that I've just launched. So definitely worth checking out and listening to the entire episode. So without any further ado, here is my conversation with Mark Travis. I'd like to welcome to the show, Mark. Travis, thank you so much for being on the show, man.

Mark Travis 4:19
Thank you. Thank you for asking me

Alex Ferrari 4:21
No worries. You know, I saw your I found you on the Ryder store on how to be a Hollywood director. I was very intrigued. So as I did more research, I was like wow, this is an interesting concept because there's not a lot of directing stuff out there. Not real stuff at least. So I was really interested to to watch and once I saw what you were doing it was I knew I had to have you on the show because you can hopefully answer some some questions I have. And

Mark Travis 4:48
I would I would be happy to. I want to make one little comment but what you just said Alex? Yes, not not much, but directly out there. And that's true in a way. There's also a lot out there about the record. But is very there isn't that much out there about the practical aspects of directing or writing directing stories? Certainly theory sure theory or books you can buy on any director Scorsese or Spielberg what they did, but to get down to the nuts and bolts are what directors to do sadly. There's not enough anywhere near enough.

Alex Ferrari 5:22
Yeah, exactly. And there's also an even less of that on a video. Yeah. Which is where i was i was i was the books, there's a million things, but on video, there's very little Yeah, at all. So that's why I really wanted to have you on the show. But how did you get started in the business?

Mark Travis 5:39
Well, I started out in theater. And I went in undergraduate school, I went to Antioch College in Ohio, which may or may not know, which is an amazing liberal arts college, which is a work study college where you go to school only half the year and the other half of the year, you actually are out working in real jobs that they find for you. And it was while I was there that I discovered my passion for theater. And I started actually started out as a set designer. And because I'd been studying architecture and design, and then I moved from that into acting, and an interesting stories I designed to set for a play that was running. And I remember sitting in the audience and my read my set, because I thought it was a beautiful set, which I still think it was. But I had this sort of epiphany, I was watching the actors during the performance, and I realized they were having a lot more fun than I was. So then I shifted this while I was still in college, I started to try off of plays, I got into a play, and another epiphany happened, I was standing on the set. And I'm the lead and this ad would all be played. And I'm talking to the director who's giving me notes and I realized, wait, he's having more fun than I am. So then I decided to shift to direct the nice, continued to do all three, and include writing but I continued to do set design writing, acting and directing while I was in college. Then I went to Yale drama school, to study directing to get an MFA in directing. And so my whole focus was always on theater wasn't on film at all. The school, the undergraduate school I went to didn't really offer a fifth film. And Yale didn't really offer film me off that you could sort of dabble in film if you wanted to. But it was really it's a theater school. And then after I finished at Yale, I decided to get out of the snow region where I was born and raised and come to California. And that's when I started to discover the whole world of film and television.

Alex Ferrari 7:51
Awesome. And and, yeah, it's, it's interesting, it's interesting, sometimes the actors are having a lot more fun.

Mark Travis 8:00
You know, it is I think, in this highly collaborative business that we're in Alex, you know, I think, you know, because we're always working with other people. And we're, and if we really take our job seriously, and try to do the best we can, it's hard work. It's really hard work. And it's, it's a strain. And I think, you know, the grass is greener, you always look at the other people say, your job must be easier than mine, you know, whatever, that whatever they're doing. And so I think there's a, there's a bit of envy, for what other people do. And I know that as a director, I always envy what the actress can do, especially when I'm fortunate enough, which is very, very frequently to work with really good actors, and I watch what they do. And I'm just impressed. And I wish I could do that a little bit. I can't do it to the level they can. So I think there's a bit of jealousy, envy, mixed with admiration in this highly collaborative business, which is all very, very healthy.

Alex Ferrari 8:57
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, you sit you look at someone like Meryl Streep, or Daniel Day Lewis, and you just sit there going, Jesus, How the hell did that happen? It's so now let me ask you a question. And I'm gonna ask you a lot of directing questions in this in this episode, as because because of what the work that you do, when working with a How should a director work with the screenwriter, which I know that's a lot of issues a lot of times that happens with that. So what's the best way in your opinion to work with a screenwriter as a director?

Mark Travis 9:27
Well, it's a great question because I have very strong feelings about what is I think directors should not do what they usually do right at the beginning when they work with a screenwriter. And this actually comes down to even how a director should read a script. Most directors will read a script and that's it's an instinct that you have to fight against. When you read a script is stopped directing. And you know, you start to read a script, you say, Oh, I okay, I can see how I could do that. Oh no, we're gonna have to change that. You already. You're directing and you're critiquing the script. And to be quite honest, at that point, the first, your first couple readings of a script that you're considering doing. This may sound strange, but the script doesn't matter at that moment at all. What matters is the story. What matters? Is there a story worth telling? And can you get your mind out of the script out of directing, and actors and cameras and angles and all of that stuff. And think about a story because basically, at the end of the day, that's all you've got to have on the screen is a story. That's what people go home with, is a story. So when a director starts working with a writer, the first thing to talk about is the story, not the script. Now, a lot of people have said to me, oh, it's the same thing. I'll tell you. No, it's not. You know, it's, you can take any film. You can take any film that's out now that's very popular, like Manchester by the Sea or something. And I can tell you what this Yeah, that's a story about a guy who has to go back to his hometown to take care of his nephew because his brother died. And now I'm telling you the story. Now, the script is really one, only one way to tell that story. It's that script is here's a way to tell it, there are a dozen other ways you can tell the same story. So to start to focus on the story you want to tell because basically, that's what you're trying to serve. And to begin working with a writer the first day of director needs to do first of all, this is something I learned from Harold Clurman, who you may or may not know who he is, whoops theater, who was I studied with the actors studio. And he would say, the first time you meet with a writer, you must express enthusiasm. And that's interesting, but you realize how important that is Express enthusiasm. First of all, if you aren't enthusiastic about the script and the story, you're going to tell, if there's no enthusiasm at all, then you shouldn't be there. So there is must be some enthusiasm, something within you that is very excited about this, express that to the writer, let the writer know about your level of enthusiasm or your area of enthusiasm. So you start from there. Too often I've seen and I've worked with a lot of a list directors and I've seen them work with writers and they'll sit down say, Okay, I read the script. Here's what we hear here are the problems, they go right for the problems. And then not saying this is a great going now it back into the story. So express that in thews e Azzam, and remember that working with a writer. And this also applies to working with actors, actors or writers who work much more are much more aligned in their work process than directors are. But working with a writer, you're talking to somebody who has spent months, maybe even years work working on this story. And basically, this story has come emerged out of them out of their sensibilities, their passions, their fears, their desires, wherever it came out of them deep, someplace deep inside them, the story emerged, and they shaped it. So it's their baby. And the last thing they want to hear is criticism naturally, but they're going they know they're going to have to hear criticism. But the first thing they want to hear is that you respect and honor the baby, the child that is being being formed here. If you don't do that, if you come if you come in with a critique already, and here's what you're going to have to do. What happens to the writer, which will also happen to an actor when you're working with them is their heart will start to shut down. Which means that they will start to build little walls around their creative process because the world that doesn't feel safe. Your job as a director, with writers and with actors, is to create the safest environment possible. And you can you can create it which means keep other people away from them. And you create this environment where they feel that they can continue to play and imagined and create. And if there's too much criticism, or even the way the criticism is stated to them, how you articulate your problems can be damaging. It's a very it's a it's the working with writers and working with actors is the most delicate ships in the whole process. And too often, they're abused.

Alex Ferrari 14:40
Especially when not both actors and writers but writers are legendarily abused in Hollywood they just they get no respect but without them there's really no there's like there's nothing. Now watching you're watching your DVD set, the beginning of your the beginning of your course. Can you I would love you just to talk a little bit about that. Cuz I found it so wonderful of what, what a director really is how, you know, like, what are the tool sets that they're using to tell their story and you broke it down in such a wonderful way? Can you talk a little bit about that?

Mark Travis 15:15
When I'm sitting here, Alex trying to go? What did I do? Here's ago?

Alex Ferrari 15:19
I know. The specific the specific one was about how what does a director use to tell his story? You know that there's a bunch of different people who you're hiring to to put you got it now?

Mark Travis 15:34
Yeah, okay. Yeah, the, I mean, first of all, what a director is, I mean, this is another topic, which maybe we'll pick up a little later, where I feel that the word director is the wrong title for what we do. It's because it guides us in the wrong direction. But a director, job is actually to take this story that's in a script for him at this point, or maybe not, and Shepherd it and guide it all the way through a process that it will eventually become a film, then a director's. The essential thing that the director has to do is protect the story, understand the story and protect the story. Through this process through this process, which can be actually brutal and can actually destroy or diminish the story, the director has to realize that the story emerges from the writer, so he must respect for the writer has to be huge. I as a director, and I know there are many other directors who will do this will I will keep the writer with me. The writer is with me all the way through the making of the film. That's much many times to the chagrin of the producer who says why do we need them and all that, but doesn't matter because my feeling is that person who wrote that script is the original source. Even if their rewrites have to be done, even if we have to, we're going to do some rewrites by another writer, I want these these writers there because they are constantly supplying a source of information that is essential to the making of the film. And the other thing is that, as I'm directing the film, I'm getting deeper into the film and deeper into the process, I will become more myopic, it becomes tunnel vision, as you probably know, you get in there, pretty soon, you can only see that one prop that you're working with at that moment, or that one scene. And we need to as directors, we need to because we were down to the My notion that we're very micro, the writer being there. Every time I've shot something with the writer there. I know, the writer now can step back from the process step out a little bit out of the process of being more objective to the process, and observe what I'm doing not that the writer is telling me how to direct. But the writer now is watching to make sure that the story is moving in the direction it needs to the writer because one of my most important allies and the entire working process of the film, and the act, then secondly, to understand that in the telling of any film, any story, at the core of the story is you, the writer, and the actors, the actors are essentially at the core of the story, because the actors are going to bring life to the most important part of the whole story, which is the characters. There are these characters, fictitional characters or biographical characters, whatever they are, but they're being recreated or created or recreated by the actors. And the actors have a very, very important job because that's where the heart of the story will live. It's going to live in the characters, it's not going to live in any other aspects not going to live in production, design, cinematography, all of that, although that's all the stuff I'm talking about now is a support system, which we use to tell the story as a film. But it's the characters it's the characters that the audience attaches to. And so how I work with them and how you treat them. So you and the earlier you bring them in to the process, the better. But directors must develop their ability to work with actors. And I can tell you, from my experience and experience of 1000s of directors that I've worked with, working with actors is the most difficult thing a director has to do. And consequently, too many directors ignore it.

Alex Ferrari 19:31
Yes, as we can see in many Hollywood blockbusters today

Mark Travis 19:36
Unfortunately, there's a system of Hollywood filmmaking that encourages them to ignore it. Okay, just get really good actors will just get some really good actors and you'll be fine. And I've been fortunate enough to be called in to consult on a lot of films, Hollywood film studio films, some which I can mention some I can't. Where it's a first, second or third. It's a it's a really Typically new director and they say let's bring in Mark to help him out. And these directors have very little skill or knowledge of how to work with actors. I've heard producers Don't worry about it, or if you hired him, you'll be fine. And I'm sitting at the table at these big consulting table, talking about film, I think, no, no, we've all seen some of the best actors in the world give horrible performances. So that idea that you hire a really good actor, you got to get a great performance doesn't mean anything. Yes, hire good actors. But also, you need a good script. But also you need a good director, who knows how to work with actors, and to encourage them stimulate and ignite them in a way that these characters can emerge from them. That's why you're there. That is the main reason you've been hired. And unfortunately, not even a lot of producers don't understand that. So those are the main thing now then there's the rest of the system, right? That's the rest of the system, which is, well, it's pretty much everything else. Everything else, which and I can tell you, because I've you know, I've been teaching, directing, not only in Los Angeles and the US, but around the world for about 25 years now. And I go to a lot of film schools, I've been, I don't know, 17 different film schools and how many different countries and one one of the things that is sad, I find it really sad, and it's almost consistent in most film schools, is students will be brought into the film school and they're within moments, a camera is put in their hands, right moments, they're asked to go out and shoot a scene, right? And they're not talking about what you and I are talking about now. There's they're not talking about what is the story? How do you tell a story they haven't been trained in how to work with actors is that here's a scene and now there's a location that house over there, why don't you do this go shoot it over there, then they send them off, they shoot it, they bring it back, and then they start editing. And this whole idea of become a film director you You must start with film and cameras and the technology i think is so wrong. Now this obviously as we talked about earlier, my background is theater. My feeling is the first thing of film directors should do is direct a play. Otherwise, I'm going to take all those toys away from you. You're not the dean you're not gonna be able to select the tapes you want. What you're going to have is a story maybe it's just a 10 minute play that would be fun, you have a story and you have a handful of actors make it work make it work with just that in other words, take away the toys take away all the tools and techniques and tricks that directors want to use and see if you can make it work now that's hard and I tell directors they should direct later I tell them a lot of them don't blame I said this directing theater is harder than directing film and it is it's much harder because you need to work with this story and you need to work with actors in a very different way in theater only because there are no cameras right guys you can't push them to get that performance you want to say I got it I got that that's the take I want to use you can't you have to work with the actors so that they can night after night give a full fledged performance of that entire play whether it's 10 minutes or two hours It doesn't matter. Do you have the ability to do that and and then logically reasonably put the whole production into the actor's hands that's what you're saying on opening night you're saying it's yours it's not mine anymore?

Alex Ferrari 23:51
I was what I you know, I always wondered that about playing replay directors or directors that do plays is like you basically work and work and work with the actors but on show night at Showtime there you have no control. No, it's it's basically the train leaves the station. You have no control of anything anymore.

Mark Travis 24:08
Yeah. Yeah, what the one thing I like to say you're absolutely right Alex. One thing I like to say when I'm especially when I'm talking with a lot of new directors, I say when you direct theater, theater and film but pretty much the same up to a point where you get when you direct theater, you have the play, then you get the actors and the financing or whatever, and you have an opening night and you'll rehearse for whatever period of time 2346 weeks or however long it is. And that opening night a curious thing happens. And this is right on the point of what you were just saying Alex, and I've directed 6070 plays I have lost count. And this happens every opening night, every opening night. I will go through postpartum depression has nothing to do with how well the play is. Doing right at the play could be going brilliantly. And I had one production I did about four or five years ago, and it was going so well that the pressure was even worse. It was just painful now that that it took me a long time, you know, and early in my career to figure out what was going on. But I realized what it is, and there's nothing I can do about it. But that postpartum depression is really, I have given I've given it up, I've released it, it's not mine anymore. And that's because theater is an actor's medium. Because it's the actors who deliver the product to the audience, not the director, the director has guided them, but the actors every night take over. And it's their version that night with all this small nuances or whatever, of filmmaking is pretty much the same. You get the script, the actors, the financing, and you go into production, and you shoot a lot of stuff, whatever you shoot, it's at the end of the production process, when you're shifting from production to post production, is a curious change. The actors go into postpartum depression, not the direct. And I've talked to so many actors, because when you realize what an actor has done in a film, no matter how many scenes they're in, they have given you the director, way more material than you need. They've given you how it is, let's say you got a five, five minute scene and you've done average of three takes and you've done 20 setups, do you realize how much material the director has. But for the direct cause, this is great. I can create what I want out of all this material. And that's absolutely right, you should. But to the actor, the actor is going I have no idea what he's going to do with my performance. I have no idea how he's going to finally shape it. And I once met Donald Sutherland. I was talking to him and he says, Yeah, that's why I don't go see my films anymore. You'll do a film, you won't go see it. He says, because it's so depressing. He says, He says he'd rather live with the memory of everything he did. Then the memory of how it was reduced down to something that sometimes he says it's not recognizable. So that's it.

Alex Ferrari 27:15
But is it also on the is it us on the other hand, that you know, a lot of these actors who you know, are up for Oscars this year, you know, their performances were constructed strictly in post production, like they took the best of the best of the best of the best of the takes, according to the directors point of view, and basically honed their performances together. So there is the other side of that, too. They like they take the best. And sometimes it's sometimes it ends up well, sometimes it doesn't. But it is it is I see your point. Now the in a in a play, the director loses all control of his vision, and the actor loses all control of their vision in the filmmaking process. And you just trust.

Mark Travis 27:56
Yeah, so filmmaking is a director's medium. And you actually write about what I've worked had the fortune fortune enough to work with a lot of amazing editors. And I've worked with Carol Littleton and pulsator and people like that. I met once watching Carol Littleton, she, I met her when she was editing et and I was watching her when she was editing the Big Chill. And I watched her shape a performance I'm sitting in the other room I went oh my god. And you're right i mean and that's that's the filmmaking business and sometimes act. As you look at there, you created a performance that I never gave back the just last week I was doing sound mixing and I'm just I'm not mixing ADR on a scene from a film I'm doing now. I brought the actors in and there's the first time they'd seen the cut of the scenes show the cut of the scene and brother and sister scene and the guy playing the brother looked at it Daniel looked at anyone whoa that's good. I never did that. Did I say well you did it but not in that order. He says it works does I says yeah, it works. He says thank you I said You're welcome. Now everything that's on the screen he did sure but what we did in post we moved moments around to create pace, more nuanced performance than he actually gave right now that's quite honestly that's my job. Actors know that but they're out there. fearful of the opposite of cheerful distrust. You need trust. Yes. Yeah. You I did this great moment. Why isn't that there? I had this thing that it was. You have complained about great performance in American Beauty. complained because a couple of moments were cut out of the movie, which he felt was so essential. To his character that it worked on. And so he felt sort of robbed of an aspect of it. Now, this happens all the time.

Alex Ferrari 30:08
All the time. Yep. All the time. We'll be right back after a word from our sponsor. And now back to the show. Now, with when working with a director, and you've worked with many directors in your career, what is the one trait that a director should nurture within themselves? Whether it be leadership or person, person to person skills, or political, you know, how to be a public political? What, what is that one thing that really that you would say, like you if you're going to do anything, you really should nurture this?

Mark Travis 30:47
Well, the ones you brought up are all good leadership skills, and all that, what what I think is, this gets back to my little bit of resistance to the term director is humility. Okay. humility and collaboration, I think we as directors, and there are also a lot of writers and actors and producers who have the same problem, we develop a certain level of confidence that that leads us to arrogance, hmm. And we have to remember that we are in a, in a highly collaborative medium. You know, and if I'm a director, I'm working with a writer, I'm working with actors I'm working with cinematographer production is I'm working with, hopefully, everybody, I've hired highly skilled people. And all of these people, believe it or not have great ideas. And a lot of these great ideas are not going to work because you, as the director have your vision. But a lot of these ideas can work. And how do you stay in a collaborative mindset is my my job I feel as a director is I want to hear every idea, every idea that anybody has, and I have a way of doing that. So it doesn't get become chaotic. Because my job I feel is to I'm going to pick through all these wonderful ideas, and create something that is beyond what I could have done alone. I've often asked directors, you know, do you want to make a film that's limited to your own creative abilities? And you go, No. Would you like to have something that's enhanced by what the writers have done, what the actors have done, what the production has done, or one film I worked on heavily, what the boom operator thought, boom operator, who would talk to me through through this sound system into my headphones, because when he would have ideas, sharing, he had, he had brilliant ideas. So I think, if you can find a way to keep yourself open, and it's a matter of two things, keeping yourself open from the very from day one, and let everybody No, not just the actors in the race, not just those people above the line, but everybody below the line, that you are open that, that everybody is making this film, it's not you making a film, and they're working for you. This is a team effort, I can't make it without you. And I want all your input all your ideas. And set up a way that you can articulate at the beginning and set up a system by which it doesn't become chaos, because you don't want to write on the set and say cut and then you know, then 12 people come charging to you with their idea that's gonna be a read.

Alex Ferrari 33:40
And also, you're also talking from a perspective of working with very high end professionals at the indie level, sometimes, you've got to be, it's good to be collaborative. And that's why it's so important to choose your collaborators wisely. But at a indie level, sometimes you're working with people who aren't that experienced, and it can turn into chaos very, very quickly for a director. Do you agree?

Mark Travis 34:01
Yes, yes. And even those Yes, absolutely, Alex, but even those people on an indie is, let's say you have an inexperienced. Let's say we'll say an actor for a moment. Because small party doesn't have a lot of experience. He's new to the business, but he's good for the role that you've cast him in. And he is just so excited, and he has a lot of ideas. And you've heard half a dozen of his ideas already. And they're just so naive and Ill informed and not workable. Right? Here's a question, what do you do? The last thing you want to do is shut him down. Because if you start to shut him down, then his creative process shuts down and then you're going to get less from him as an actor. Actually, what you want to do is continue to encourage him so that he has creative energies flow, because first of all, you have no idea one idea he may come up with may be brilliant, but so it's a matter of setting up a way I mean, I say to when I say talk to everybody about this the beginning is I want to hear your ideas, but I need to hear them at an appropriate time. Hmm, perfect, perfect. If you come to me, I said, if you come to me, and I feel it's not appropriate all I'll tell you, I'll just say not now, later. Now all that means is this is not the right time. It doesn't mean I don't want to hear it. Find another time. No, no. So I'm not shutting you down. I'm just delaying you. The other thing I tell him, I said, Listen, if you have a great idea, I'll use it. And I'm just warning you now, I'll probably take credit for it.

Alex Ferrari 35:38
And that's at the end of the day, at the end of the day, I always tell people that like if a PA shows up and gives you a great idea, guess who's getting the credit for that? You'd be foolish not to. Yeah, but there is that point, you're saying that you have to create an environment that is not chaos? Because I've been on those sets where everybody all of a sudden, thinks that the director and there's no, it's just such a fine, delicate balance, isn't it because as a director, you want to be open, you want to be collaborative, but if you're too open to everyone's ideas, then everyone start thinking, well, this guy has no vision. And then you get and then you might have a mutiny on your hands. And I've seen that happened as well. So it's just a really fine balance. It's a fine

Mark Travis 36:16
balance. Yeah. And you don't want to work with the directors that I've worked with directors, where I, I've consulted with the director for months prior to the shoot. And then I've, because they wanted me there during production, I'm there, and I have trouble getting it. And I got it because I could because there's so fearful of things going wrong and there's so controlling, and later I know even while we're in production, it's hard for me to talk to him about that problem. Right? So it's so it's, it's something it's something that's very delicate The other thing is, which is one of my books somewhere is how to say no to somebody, and all they hear is yes. And I can't explain it to you it's called the two plus two plus one, two plus one plus one two plus one plus one please, please explain. It's a sandwich and what you say let's say someone comes up and makes a suggestion on a camera angle. And you're and you're under a lot of pressure as you always are. And you're thinking that's the most ridiculous is that right? But and this person is your key grip. Okay? Of course you want him to be happy and keep working you don't want him going around grumbling and so how do you say no, and all he hears is yes, and it's really quite simple. The first two this is the two plus one plus one the first two things you say to him are positive then comes the negative and then one more positive. The first two positives could go something like this. And you could say to him to say his name is George Hey, George, George you know you keep coming up with the greatest ideas it's really interesting and I want to thank you for bringing me that word because it's really a fascinating idea. Unfortunately I'm not going to be able to do it but I want you to keep coming up keep thinking that way okay. Now buried in there is unfortunately I can't do it that was the no all right. What he hears is Oh, he's happy because I have ideas and he wants to hear more ideas he's not doing this one but he wants to hear more and he goes away happy that's the psychology Yeah, it goes away hearing Yes. Yeah. And and I've done this for people who can't do that it's a lie. I said don't make it a lie. Make it the truth. Be honest about it Don't lie to make every statement you say it's true. But you have to now the thing is what I just did took about what 10 seconds I'm done. Yeah, I'm done and George is off going and I'm and that that question or that suggestion is closed now with I don't have to worry about it coming back again. And so I so it doesn't take much time you just it was developed. The one of the things in terms of film directing canon one of my books is based on this film directors bag of tricks, which is this idea Alex, there's a lot as we talked about a little bit earlier from books and some videos and whatever even film school. The techniques working with design, sound editing, mixing, the CGI, all that stuff. It's all these techniques of directing that you can learn. And I I would suggest that all of that together. is half of directing. Only half The other half, which is equally as powerful is your ability to work with other people. Mm hmm. It's psychology. When it every single day you're doing it with the actors, you do the writers you do it with all those people you're working with, how you handle them, and how you keep them open and creative. How do you say no to them? How you say yes to them, how you encourage them, how you inspire them, how you communicate to them, how you connect with them as people is equally as important. And I've seen some directors that are highly skilled and the directorial area, and I watch them in terms of how they work. People work with the people. And sometimes it's horrifying.

Alex Ferrari 40:38
Oh, yeah, I mean,

Mark Travis 40:42
these are, these are directors who have made wonderful films, or the director, but I talked to members of the crew, and they asked after the film, because I saw the film I said, great. I said, Oh, yeah, but making it was a horror. And I heard the stories about what they went through them, and I go, that's not worth it. And that. And another part of directing, I think directors have to remember, except with the actors and the writer aside, but the rest of the rest of the crew below the line, which is huge, and it can get sometimes up to 1000s of people. But that those people, my contention is most of them are not, I'm gonna say this in a harsh way. Most of them. I'm not terribly concerned with how well the film goes. Most of them, I think, quite appropriately, really concerned about how they are doing while they're working on the film, their experience, day to day. That's what they take home with them. That's what lives within them afterwards, if they see the film later, and I've seen a lot of films I've worked on and the crews then they go, Oh, that's too bad. It didn't work. But their experience of making the film was great. They feel good about what they did. So I think we have to remember that that's what these as we're trying to put together a film where we're thinking about the final product, these people are thinking about what they're doing today. Right? So how we treat them, how we encourage them, how we acknowledge them, how we praise them. I mean, if you see a grip, you're standing around, getting ready to hit the suddenly he starts moving grip equipment to get ready for the next shot that he's anticipating to say thank you, thank you. Just be just be aware of that, that that thank you can make his day that he was acknowledged. For see we're getting ahead of the curve seen well. This is what's

Alex Ferrari 42:51
important to them. At the end of the day, it's it's it just goes back to some really old fashioned values be nice, be respectful, be polite, basic stuff, really basic stuff. Now what is I want to add one more call for

Mark Travis 43:04
good? Yeah, all that be nice, we appreciate? also be willing to admit that you don't have the answer.

Alex Ferrari 43:10
Oh, that's a big one, isn't it? Oh, that's a big

Mark Travis 43:13
one. What do you what do you got? I know the number of times someone said, Okay, what are we going to do? What are we going to do here? How do you want to do this? And, and I've thought, you know, I've gotten myself a place I could do this cycle? You know, I have no idea that go I said No, I don't. So let's figure it out. Now the let's figure it out means you and I together are going to work this out. Now I'm collaborating. Now they feel important. Okay, let's work this out. Not too many directors are afraid to say they don't have the end.

Alex Ferrari 43:43
That's the thing. That's the thing. I feel like I've been on a lot of sets. And I've worked with so many directors in my career as well of being in the post business and being on on production. And you just can tell when a director is just comfortable in their own skin and confident in their ability to be able to do the job. And when something comes out, although all the best ones like how do we do this? Like, I don't know, let's figure it out. That's always the best answer. But but that's the very minority of the bunch of people I've worked with. Most of them are very scared that if they say I don't know, that they're like, oh, like, Oh, they know I'm a fraud. And I don't it's this kind of ridiculousness of it. But I get it. Because I mean, I've been directing for 20 years as well. And I get that I get that feeling because I've been there early parts of my career. Now the point is like, Yeah, I don't know, let's figure it out. And that's just confidence. And that I think happens over time to that. It's rare to find that in a young director, unless you're Orson Welles.

Mark Travis 44:40
And also, I mean, if someone, you're on the set, you're shooting or some you're, you're in production, which is where the biggest pressure is sometimes. And you get asked a question by somebody. Even the producer doesn't matter who it is, and you have no idea what the answer is. You're lost. Trick This is this phrase from my book bag of tricks is to say to the person I don't know, I don't know, tell me what you think. Now, tell me what you think means the other person is going to start. Because they probably have an idea. And you know what it's doing for you. It's giving you time to think you're putting it, you're putting the ball on the other side of the net. So you deal with this for a moment, I'll listen. And while they while they're talking, even though their idea may be totally ridiculous, gives you a moment to sort of gather some thoughts, rather than them asking you the question and you scrambling to come up with something because you feel you must have the answer. You don't. As I say to a lot of directors, you don't have to have the answers, but you have to make decisions. Right? You know, I don't know. And then down the line, maybe five minutes later, okay, I'm deciding it's going to be blue. We're going that way. Everybody, we'll go Okay, fine. Make a decision. But you don't have to have the answers. Me part of production really is coming up with answers. It's questions every 30 seconds.

Alex Ferrari 46:06
I know. It's actually brutal sometimes

Mark Travis 46:10
Oh, yeah. Yeah, it's it's really brutal. It's

Alex Ferrari 46:13
not as far as casting is concerned. What is your casting process? Because it's, you know, casting is such a huge part of the filmmaking process.

Mark Travis 46:19
Okay. Glad you asked that. Now, you've seen the DVD. And I'm assuming a lot of people who are listening to this have not seen the DVD you're taught you're talking about which is, which is actually called Hollywood, film directing. And anybody who gets in touch with me, I can put them in touch with it. But in the DVD, Alex, you saw a process called the interrogation process, the interrogation process was where I am the director, and actually bypassing the actor. In terms of working with the actors, and directing the actors, I bypass the actors thinking, and I'm talking only to the character. And I'm actually interrogating the character and asking the character, a lot of tough questions. So I'm good. Now I want to get back to your question about casting. I have very, very specific thoughts and ideas and beliefs about the director, actor relationship. And then the director, character relationship, which is two different relationships. In the casting process, most directors 99%, directors will run it in a very, very specific way. The same way actor comes in, have a little talk about this the character if necessary, the actor will read a scene with a reader. And the director will either say thank you very much interested, or the director will work with the actor and ask for some kind of adjustments, do it a different way, I think it should be darker, lighter, angrier, or whatever, I see him as a bolder character, I don't see him as that insecure, whatever it is, they'll talk after the reading, they will talk to the actor give them adjustment, and then they will ask the actor to do it again. That process to me is part of, it's gonna sound strange part of the problem. The problem, as I see it, and working with actors is too often we as directors, too often all the time, are asking actors to create a character in a certain way, or deliver the character or perform the character a certain way. What I like to do is talk to the character, let the character emerge from the actor. And many times to the actress surprise, see how the character handles the situation. So back to the casting. I'm casting, I have the actor command, we talk a little bit, they will read a scene. audition is done soon as they finished reading the scene. Or moment right now, I will not talk to the actor at all. I talked. So let's say we're doing a scene in the states from American Beauty or something like that. And someone's reading for Lester. As soon as he finishes reading, I will start talking to Lester. And I will talk to Lester about what he just experienced in the scene. Now,

Alex Ferrari 49:23
when do you tell the actor? Are you going to do this prior to that or absolutely not? Oh, you don't?

Mark Travis 49:28
There's no preparation? Okay. I'll tell you why. That's a great question, Alex. I'll tell you why. And a lot of people have asked me about the interrogation process and do you prepare the actors for this? No, I don't. And my experience of doing this for 1520 years I've been doing this is that if I talked if I talk to the I can give you some more examples if I talk to the My prepare, okay, okay, that I gotta go back if I if I tell the actor about Beforehand, do you want the What do you stop the act, I'm

Alex Ferrari 50:02
going to start prepping, they're gonna start prepping for I don't

Mark Travis 50:04
want them prepping. I don't want the actor, this is gonna sound strange. I don't want the actor to be working on something. Now he's working on the preparation for how I'm going to talk to the he's going to talk to the character. Now what am I going to do? Now the actor is trying to do what he's been trained to do. He's been trained to how to control and shape the character. I'm actually not interested in that. I am interested in the character that exists already inside the act. This is an important part of my process. I believe, once I've cast an actor in a role, that the character that he or she is to play already exists, already exists inside the actor 100%. The problem is, the actor has to get out of the way and let the character emerge. Now that's a very difficult thing to do. But that's how the interrogation process works. That's what it does. So

Alex Ferrari 51:03
how so how did the actors react? When like, Can you just give us an example of like the process? Yeah. Are you done talking? And then you just automatically just ask them?

Mark Travis 51:12
If you were there next, next, next time I do a casting, are you here in Los Angeles? Yeah, yeah, I'm here. Okay. Next time I do a casting I'll call you. Oh, please. Well, no,

Alex Ferrari 51:20
I would, I would be fascinated.

Mark Travis 51:21
I'll tell I'll tell you exactly what happens if I mean, and I've done now, I got to this backup a little bit. The last time I did this was for a play I directed here. And the writer and the producers who of course, were there. I didn't warn them either.

Alex Ferrari 51:38
Even better.

Mark Travis 51:40
Nope. And what they saw, because I'm really interested. This is just me, Mark Travis, I'm interested in what happens in human beings. When they get hit by something and they're unprepared for it. If you have to prepared for it, you you're trying to control it. What happens? I'm going back to your question, I will less to read and write as soon as it's done. I say, well, Lester, that didn't go very well did it. Now the actor is suddenly hearing me talk to his character, not to him. And what if you watch the actor, it's a split second is a split second of confusion. It's a beautiful movie I

Alex Ferrari 52:21
was about to say must be brilliant.

Mark Travis 52:24
And then then, is the key moment of adjustment. And I would say 90% of the time, the actor will go back right back into the character and start rattling back. Yeah, yeah, that didn't go well. Well, what are you gonna do? She's your wife is Yes, she's my wife. I mean, are you gonna let her keep talking. And you realize that the actor, the actor, now totally happy. Because this is what the actor came in to do. The actor did not come in to have a discussion about the character, the actor came in to show how he can portray a character. And I'm just saying to them, just be the character. Forget the acting part. I don't want to talk to you, I don't want to even talk to you about actors choices, all that I just, I just want to see the character. Now what I'm doing there, Alex, which I don't, which I explain people later, if necessary, or not, what I'm doing, along with my belief system, that the character already exists inside the actor, I want to see with that particular actor, the Lester that exists inside him, not the one that he's going to shape and plan the one that's already there, if we just release it. So when I go through a casting process, I am not really seriously I'm not casting the Best Actor for each role. I'm casting Lester, I'm casting the Lester, I want. Another one I'm making notes on this lesson is slightly different than this one, this one. And I need to read I need to remove the actress control because the actors control of it. Unfortunately, sadly, the actor will come in trying to assuming he knows from reading the script what the writer wanted, assuming he making some kind of guess what I the director depending on how well they know me might be looking for. So it's all getting filtered through the actor. And he's trying to give me what I want or give the writer or the producers what he thinks they want. Now I'm getting a lesser that's filtered through all of these assumptions that the actor is making. I'd rather see the Lester just pure. I can change the Lessard slightly if I want to. You understand. Otherwise get the ad. Is it really ironic that one of the biggest obstacles actors have is their own ability to think? Yes, and this is an I'd made this up Respect, because I respect the actors work, I respect all forms of training that the actors go through all forms of preparation that they go through all the research they go through. And I think yes, do that you must do that, that is going to, it's going to make you a better actor, a stronger actor. But all of that, depending on how you handle it will get in the way of the character. Because your job is to become the character, and how can you become the character when you're trying to control it when you're making assumptions about the character, what he's thinking and feeling. And many times I do this, a lot of lot of actors that I work with here who have worked this way, and by the way, actors love this, a lot of reasons. One reason is working this way, they cannot make a mistake. Right? If I ask an actor to play a scene a certain way, there's a good chance they will miss it. They won't get it or they won't get it to my satisfaction now

Alex Ferrari 56:00
within a second or 10 seconds of preparation that you give them yeah, I really truly hate casting because of that part. Yeah, but

Mark Travis 56:07
let's do this. But we I need it lighter and more frothy. Yeah.

Alex Ferrari 56:10
Can you be a little bit more? Yeah. actors like frothy What the hell is Friday

Mark Travis 56:16
and more frothy? If I if I now use now, you've got the actor trying to translate lighter and more frothy? What the hell does that mean? What does that mean to him? He's the director that

Alex Ferrari 56:29
didn't teach me this in course, that teach me this in acting class.

Mark Travis 56:33
And now I'm gonna have to do it again. And I'm going to have to end so it'll who knows what they'll do. But let's say we're doing the Leicester thing again, we do the Leicester scene and I'm talking to Lester and i i Alex and thinking I want it lighter. I want it more playful. Okay. That's what I'm thinking. But I'm not going to tell the actor that because that's that's result directing and it's a disaster. And I'm talking to Lester said it didn't go very well. Then the gardener i said i can i this is what I say in the casting press. I said, Listen, listen, Lester, you got to get another shot at this. So you better not screw it up this time. He says, Yeah, I was a guy scared, because you could screw it up. You know, there's not gonna be any sex ever again. You know that right? That needs got Yeah, I know. Now I've just put pressure on him. But less, you know, you're not yet you know, that little playful thing you do to her that gets returned on? Yeah. You haven't done that for a while. We might try that. No, I just told Lester, how to approach the scene, not the actor. Right. And I went back to something I reminded him of a quality I think he used to have, and I'm going for lighter and more frothy. But I want it to come from Lester, not from the actor. This is a very fine line distinction. But if you see this process, you'll see how it works. And getting back to making no mistakes less the actor will do Lester again. It may be lighter and frothy and play more playful. Whatever it'll be, it'll be different. It won't be wrong. It won't be a mistake. I can't blame the actor. For what? Because he could say well, that's just the way Lester did it. I said, Yep, you're right. That's just what Lester did. That's the way his Lester handled it. So he will always be true to his Lester. So it's a very it's a very critical aspect of directors working with actors how. And now the thing is of actors getting out of their own way, the actor cannot do it by themselves. They need that other person like you saw on the DVD, who will actually work with them, and ignite the character inside them ignite the thinking process the brain of the character to the point where the actor's mind shifts into the back and lets the character just exist on his own.

Alex Ferrari 58:52
That's it. I'm gonna hold you to that, please call me on the next casting you do, because I really would love to see this. And I had the follow up question to that. What happens to the other 10% of the actress when you do this to them?

Mark Travis 59:05
The other 10 other people who don't? Can't handle it?

Alex Ferrari 59:10
Yeah, what do they do?

Mark Travis 59:11
I've run into problems where they can't, can't handle it. Now. The rare when I can sense it a little bit in the casting process, I can sense that they're, they feel hesitant to sort of totally engaged in this improvisation that I'm doing with the character. And that to me is a warning sign. Yeah, it doesn't mean it's not going to work. But I go, Oh, I can see they're hesitant, but I know I can get past that hesitancy later. If the character I'm seeing I think is really interesting. That's what I'm seeing. And that hesitancy is just a fear. And it's a fear that some actors have of just letting go. You know, there are a lot of actors who are very confident about their work and very skilled in what they doing or doing and

Alex Ferrari 1:00:01
We'll be right back after a word from our sponsor. And now back to the show.

Mark Travis 1:00:12
But very fearful of getting up giving up the control they have. There was one actor I was working with who I had cast in a play. And he was playing the father, really good actor. And we were doing the interrogation process in rehearsal. Now he had done it in the casting, and I could see, he was not that comfortable with it. And now I have a cast of seven people. And we're doing it in rehearsal. And he had tells me and it sort of announces to everybody else, okay, I don't really like this process. I'm not comfortable with this, it's been very honest, I'm not comfortable with it. And I'm not really good at improvisation. Now, we're all sitting around there, and I'm going to keep working, I have to keep working. I won't call on you, I won't do this with you at all. But you have to stay, you have to stay in, in the, in this rehearsal in the room, he says, fine. So we're sitting in a circle, we're just sitting in a circle. And I'm interrogating the cat. Now I'm Tara gave me his wife and his children. And he's just sitting there. Now very purposely, I interrogate the wife and children, and I get them talking about the Father. The father is the lead get us and the father is the lead in the play. So the whole play sort of revolves around him anyway. And I now, and I've done this many times before, and I know that that actor who as I can't handle it will only be silent for about three or four minutes. Right? And pretty soon, and what he did, his name is Jim what Jim finally there's Okay, wait, wait, no, no, no, no, listen. And he, as the character started to emerge, all he needed was the permission to not do this. Which and again, that's getting back to what you and I were talking about Alex earlier, how can we create a safe environment? I didn't want to force them to say you have to do this, because now I'm in sort of a dictatorial environment. I don't want to do that. I said, No, you don't have to, you don't have to do this at all. But I just want you to stay here. Well, that's easy. You just stay in the chair. And then he became engaged. And then for the rest of the rehearsal, he was fine for the rest of the whole, the whole rehearsal, not just that day, but

Alex Ferrari 1:02:25
it's actually really interesting. It's a really interesting technique. It really is. I've never heard of that technique before. And I look forward to using it in the future. It sounds it sounds really good. Now. The next question I have is a question that I know a lot of filmmakers and directors have dealt with. I know you've dealt with it multiple times in your career, because if you're a director, you will deal with this. And I've never found a good answer to this question. So I would hope you can. If an act of pressure and I it's massive, its massive. Its massive, sir. It's massive. If an actor's being difficult on set, what do you do? When I say difficult there's many levels of difficult there's Liz Lindsay Lohan difficult, which is a whole other world. But I'm talking about literally either being defined on set being publicly defined to your direction on set, trying to be little you on set, or just refusing to take your direction. What do you do with an actor like that? And we're saying and we're suggesting that this isn't, we could do it two ways. One is an actor that does not have a gravitas if you will, like it's it's it's an unknown, or just an actor who's working to act or something like that. And then there's the movie star, which is another avenue. So how would you work with that? I know this isn't a complex question. So please do your best.

Mark Travis 1:03:45
I will do my best first of all the Lindsay Lohan thing, which I mean if you're dealing with someone who has emotional psychological or diction dependency problems, you've got

Alex Ferrari 1:03:57
that that's a whole nother that's why I said that's a whole other world

Mark Travis 1:04:00
but that aside because then you go to the producer and you say you handled it because I don't I don't want to get into that. Yeah, but getting back to what you're asking and you have any actor for whatever reasons is difficult. My first assumption and I believe this to be absolutely true. And again, this is there are a lot of these techniques are that are in my book, film directors bag of tricks, which is how to work with writers and how to work with actors. So sometimes under some very difficult circumstances like this, but in this situation, when an act is even, first of all, as a director, be aware of can you be aware of warning signs that have come earlier? Even slight resistance. Even if I suggest to an act, okay, this is what I want you to I want you to go over there and pick up the hammer on this. Okay, fine. Got a problem, I got a problem. The my assumption when an actor starts to become resistant, or it becomes very resistant, like you said, won't come out of the trailer is doing it publicly. And my first assumption is fear, not my fear, their fear, they are afraid of something, this resistance, this determination to defy authority, determination to draw attention to themselves and take over take control, to disrupt, to sabotage or whatever. It's fear based, they're afraid of something. Now, I may not know right at the beginning what it is, hopefully, if you watch for the warning signs, you can get an idea of what it is. And it could be a number of things depending on who the actor is, their expertise, their level of fame, of famous they are, I know, a lot of very well known actors, and I've talked to them about this, their fear of giving a horribly miserable performance and something that's going to haunt them for the rest of their career. We're a beginning actor doesn't care. They're just happy to be working. Right? But so with that actor, if you rather than address directly the resistance, you need to somehow address the fear. Now addressing the fear, it means not pushing against that, I'm not going to do that, Oh, yes, you are. First of all, if you get into an argument, you're both going to lose, just be aware that you will both lose, nobody's gonna win. You may get them to do that shot that they didn't want to do. may get him to actually physically do it. But did you really get what you wanted? In that shot? No. And even if you think maybe you got it's close enough, but then what you've got is a history of resistance and conflict between the two of you and you forced him to do something, which means the whole relationship is now devolving. In other words, don't try to win the argument you're in. And this also comes down to working with writers too, and producers and stuff. But listen, stay with actors. Don't try to assert the actor is fighting, you know, in the back of your mind, he or she is afraid of something, then you stop and just capitulate literally completely. They say, Okay, I'm not No, I'm not doing that. I'm not gonna do that shot. Then you say, Okay, great. And you change the subject. Now that the subject you change to, let's say, you're doing a shot where the actress has to run across the field and fall down or something like that, I'm just making this up. And for whatever reason, she doesn't want to go back in the story, change this template, go back to something earlier in the story, a scene earlier just moments earlier. And maybe it's the scene before that you have shot or about to shoot and go back to what I call a point of agreement. Let's get back to the point of agreement. say, Okay, let's Yeah, we won't do that. If I said, you know, the scene that comes right before this that we shot two weeks ago. Yeah. Remember when you were in the kitchen arguing with your daughter? Yeah. You say that was a great scene, by the way, we're cutting it together really looks good. No, thank you. Now, I'm at a point of agreement. I'm a first of all, I just complimented her, which is part of the two plus one last one. And I say, you know in that in that scene, what your character was dealing with the new and you clarify what you did there, what you agreed on.

If you can go back to a point of agreement, and now you're talking with Zach, do you know what now you're collaborating again, you're not arguing at all. The argument is gone. No, she still may not want to do the scene which he runs falls in the field. But your your task now is to get her past the fear. And you still don't know what the fear is. So but you start working from there, you start working up to start talking about what you're doing, and working up to this scene of running across the field and falling down and say okay, and then after this argument, she comes running out of the house we shot you're running out of the house from the inside now we're outside. And now you're still at a point of agreement. She goes yeah. Now this is the trick. Switch to the character. Talk to the cat and I say this say she's playing a character named joy. I say okay, now joy. You're running out of the house. What do you want to do? Now I've eliminated the actor, and I'm just talking to the character and I'm interrogating the character at this point. Finding out She, how she's thinking. I can tell you 50% of the time we'll end up with running across the field and calling down. You got a 5050 shot. I got a 5050 shot. If we don't love that, there's another 5050 shot, she'll come up with something better. As the character, you'll say, as I said, Okay, what do you want to do? She says, I want to hide I want to hide. There's there's that little shack in the back. I want to go in there and hide. I don't want anybody to see me.

Alex Ferrari 1:10:30
Now you're doing this just to have you not in front of a bunch of people.

Mark Travis 1:10:33
Yeah, just the two of us.

Alex Ferrari 1:10:35




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Oscar® Winning Writers/Directors
(Everything, Everywhere, All At Once)

Jason Blum

(Shaun of the Dead, Baby Driver)

Oscar® Nominated Producer
(Get Out, Whiplash)

Chris Moore sml

Oscar® Nominated Producer
(Good Will Hunting, American Pie)

(Menace II Society, Book of Eli)

Marta Kauffman sml

Oscar® Winning Writer/Director
(Last Samurai, Blood Diamond)

Emmy® Winning Writer & Showrunner
(Friends, Grace and Frankie)

Free Training of The Week


How to Direct Big Action Sequences on a Micro-Budget

By Gil Bettman

Join veteran director Gil Bettman as he shares the secrets to directing big budget action on a micro budget.