Acting tips can help an actor go from a novice to a maestro. Of course, an actor can claim to be a natural who knows the art of acting, but every actor needs specific acting tips to hone their craft. So let’s look at acting tips that can elevate your acting skills.
Acting Tips by Notable Personalities
1. Meryl Streep’s Acting Tips
Meryl Streep explains what acting is and gives method actors advice on finding a connection between themselves and the character they are portraying.
“Acting is not about being someone different. It is finding the similarity in what is apparently different, then finding myself in there.”
“I am curious about other people. That is the essence of my acting. I am interested in what it would be like to be you.”
2. Michael Shurtleff’s Acting Tips
Image Source: Acting Studio Chicago
Michael Shurtleff, the author of “Audition,” one of the best books on auditioning, discusses the necessity of understanding that the actor’s role is to make a tale intelligible to the audience.
“Every scene you will ever act in begins in the middle, and it is up to you, the actor, to provide what comes before.”
3. James Franco’s Acting Tips
James Franco on collaborating with directors:
“If I give a good performance, I give at least 50 percent of the credit to the director.”
4. Johnny Depp’s Acting Tips
Johnny Depp has a laid-back attitude about picking roles that might not turn out to be correct.
“If it works, great. If it does not work, I tried.”
“If you catch me saying ‘I am a serious actor,’ I beg you to slap me.”
5. Paul McGann’s Acting Tips
Paul McGann’s view about acting is:
“Only the people that cannot possibly be dissuaded from acting should be doing it. That is almost the minimum requirement.”
6. Harriet Walter on Acting
Harriet Walter, on the importance of treating your coworkers with respect, both for their benefit and one’s own, says:
“Treat directors (and writers) as innocent until proven guilty.”
7. Samuel West’s Acting Tips
On the importance of knowing the human toll that theater school or acting can have on you, Samuel West says:
“Acting is not therapy.”
8. Brian Cox’s Acting Tips
On auditions where the applause is severely missing, Brian Cox says:
“My mother used to say, ‘What is for you will not go by you.’ It is a great phrase to keep in mind when you do not get a job”.
9. Lesley Manville’s Acting Tips
Lesley Manville’s audition advice is plain and easy:
“Accept that you are going to have nerves, to begin with.”
10. Lupita Nyong’o’s Acting Tips
According to actress Lupita Nyong’o, being afraid of a part is no reason to avoid it.
“Every single role brings with it ignorance and an insecurity, and so you have to approach it with the same curiosity and humility.”
11. Jimmy Fallon’s Acting Tips
Jimmy Fallon offers more general advice on realizing that not everyone shares your vision for yourself.
“There is always going to be someone out there who does not believe in you or who thinks your head is too big or you are not smart enough. But those are the people you need to ignore, and those are the times you need to just keep doing what you love doing.”
12. Robin Williams’s Acting Tips
Recognition for performing is not necessarily everything, according to Robin Williams.
“Winning an Oscar is an honor, but, between you and me, it does not make things easier.”
13. Natalie Portman’s Acting Tips
The following comment sums up Natalie Portman’s advice on how to enhance your acting skills:
“Ninety percent of how you learn is by watching great people. When you are surrounded by good actors it lifts your performance.”
14. Derek Hough’s Acting Tips
According to Derek Hough, actors must assess their motivations for choosing roles.
“Try to be honest with yourself and not just sort of fall into something that you think will make you popular, or you think that you will get respect from.”
15. Tina Fey’s Acting Tips
Tina Fey is not one to recommend sitting on the couch and waiting for employers to come knocking at your door.
“If you are an actor and you do not get cast in stuff a lot, then put together a show or hold play-reading nights at your apartment. Make your own opportunities.”
16. Amy Poehler’s Acting Tips
Amy Poehler has a simple auditioning tip for you.
“If you do a scene and you really like a character in it or a premise in it, write it down and work on it so that you can have five or six characters that you can pull out in an audition.”
17. Emilia Clarke’s Acting Tips
Emilia Clarke’s advice to actors studying theater is not precisely sunshine, but it is still vital.
”You cannot come out of drama school and think, ‘It is all going to be amazing.’ You have to expect to work in a bar for at least five years and be a waitress for maybe two!”
Emilia Clarke’s Advice for Actors
18. Barbra Streisand’s Acting Tips
Barbra Streisand discusses the importance of maintaining the actor-audience relationship.
“The audience is the best judge of anything. They cannot be lied to. Truth brings them closer. A moment that lags – they are gonna cough.”
19. Katharine Hepburn’s Acting Tips
When it comes to acting, Katharine Hepburn underlines the necessity of not cutting corners.
“To keep your character intact you cannot stoop to filthy acts. It makes it easier to stoop the next time.”
Katherine Hepburn’s Acting Tips
20. Marilyn Monroe’s Acting Tips
Marilyn Monroe serves as a harsh reality check for those who romanticize acting.
“Dreaming about being an actress is more exciting than being one.”
Marilyn Monroe And The Actors Studio
21. Audrey Hepburn’s Acting Tips
Audrey Hepburn’s inspirational advice on discovering hidden qualities disguised as problems is:
“I was asked to act when I could not act. I was asked to sing ‘Funny Face’ when I could not sing, and dance with Fred Astaire when I could not dance – and do all kinds of things I was not prepared for. Then I tried like mad to cope with it.”
Audrey Hepburn Interview – 1988
22. Charlie Chaplin’s Acting Tips
Charlie Chaplin makes it crystal apparent what performers (and everyone else, for that matter) must do in order to advance.
“Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself.”
23. Theo James’ Acting Tips
According to Theo James, getting into character should not be a significant headache.
“I think the best way to become a character is by osmosis as opposed to thinking directly about stuff.”
24. Tom Hiddleston’s Acting Tips
Tom Hiddleston has a good grasp of what acting entails and what you should strive for as an actor.
“Our job is to represent the truth of human nature, whether you are playing a tender love story that is set in a coffee shop or whether you’re in ‘The Avengers,’ which is set in a Manhattan which is exploding.”
25. Christopher Lee’s Acting Tips
Christopher Lee offers advice on how to deal with unfavorable acting roles.
“Every actor needs to make bad movies now and then, but the trick is to never be bad in them.”
26. Ingrid Bergman’s Acting Tips
Ingrid Bergman discusses what the audience expects from you as an actor:
“It is not whether you really cry. It is whether the audience thinks you are crying.”
27. Jack Nicholson’s Acting Tips
In his own words, Jack Nicholson testifies to the difficulties of acting.
“In this industry, there are only two ways up the ladder. Rung by rung or claw your way to the top. It is sure been tough on my nails.”
28. Will Smith’s Acting Tips
Will Smith has some work ethic advice for actors and non-actors equally, which you can chew on for a while.
“If you are not willing to work hard, let someone else do it. I would rather be with someone who does a horrible job, but gives 110% than with someone who does a good job and gives 60%.”
“You have to clear your own personal blocks. You have to be able to be vulnerable in front of anybody. You have to be comfortable looking silly, you have to be comfortable making mistakes, and you have to break the thing inside of you that does not want people to see, right? Because as soon as you allow people to see, all of a sudden you get access to things that you did not realize you have access to.”
29. Clint Eastwood’s Acting Tips
Clint Eastwood offers a sobering perspective on not being excessively analytical about the audience’s reaction.
“You are always hoping that movie audiences are interested in characters and interested in story values rather than just mindless special effects. But you never know.”
30. Orlando Bloom’s Acting Tips
Orlando Bloom offers advice on where to focus your attention and mental energy.
“As an actor, you cannot think about the end result or the fame; you just have to focus on the day you are in. You have no control over the finished product, what people will think of it, so all you have is the experience of making it, and you have to stay focused on that.”
31. Quentin Tarantino’s Acting Tips
Quentin Tarantino discusses the blurring of barriers between different theater occupations and the importance of acting in other performance elements.
“Everything I learned as an actor, I have basically applied to writing.”
Quentin Tarantino’s Acting Tips
32. Abhishek Bachchan’s Acting Tips
Consider the comments of Abhishek Bachchan when coping with criticism of your acting.
33. Alan Alda’s Acting Tips
And a piece of advice from Alan Alda on making time fly offstage.
“Backstage life is terrific training for an actor, seeing shows from the wings.”
34. Timothy Simmons’s Acting Tips
Timothy Simmons believes that originality is something worth pursuing.
“You do not want to go in trying to force yourself into some archetype that has been thought up by a director and translated by a casting director.”
35. Cameron Diaz’s Acting Tips
Cameron Diaz believes that acting can, and should, be a very personal experience.
“Acting is something different to everybody. I just know that if you watch an actor or actress getting better and better, I think that is them just understanding themselves better and better.”
36. Naomie Harris’s Acting Tips
Naomie Harris discusses the importance of reserving space in the world of performance.
“Actors need steely determination. It is a tough profession with plenty of knocks along the way. You have to be very determined and never take ‘no’ for an answer.”
Image Source: Naomie Harris’s Acting Tips
37. Joshua Henry
Image Source: Hamilton Musical
On the other hand, Joshua Henry emphasizes the importance of self-respect and a positive self-attitude.
“You have got to treat yourself like you have got something special to offer.”
38. Emily Blunt
Emily Blunt is a firm believer in acting, requiring as much toughening up as possible.
“You have got to get the thickest skin possible. Like a rhino hide. It is a very personal job. Put a helmet on.”
39. James Dean
Here we have James Dean, who shares his views on actors using independent thinking:
“When an actor plays a scene exactly the way a director orders, it is not acting. It is following instructions. Anyone with the physical qualifications can do that.”
40. Kabir Bedi
With the following remarks, Kabir Bedi describes the many types of acting:
“Theater is done largely for the love of the craft. Television makes you famous. And films immortalize you. That’s the relationship between the three.”
41. Maggie Smith
Maggie Smith expresses her thoughts on how the actor-audience dynamic should be.
“There is a kind of invisible thread between the actor and the audience, and when it is there, it is stunning, and there is nothing to match that.”
Maggie Smith’s views on scripts and acting
42. Kareena Kapoor Khan
Kareena Kapoor Khan has the ability to see past obstacles.
“I do not take success and failure seriously. The only thing I do seriously is marched forward. If I fall, I get up and march again.”
43. Kate Winslet
Kate Winslet perfectly articulates how actors should regard their work.
“Acting, and the privilege of being able to do it for a living, is so important to me. I do not turn up and just hope for the best. I really fret about it. I do my homework; I prepare myself for the experience of playing a particular character.”
44. Philip Seymour Hoffman
Reality checks, according to Philip Seymour Hoffman.
“I know some really great actors who are pretty judgmental people, pretty critical people. But they are great actors. When they are acting, that is the craft.”
Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Acting Tips
45. Brit Marling
Brit Marling believes that never attempting to walk outside the box is a missed opportunity for adventure.
“If you play it safe every time, then you are missing the best part of acting. You have not learned anything about your humanity.”
46. Jim Carrey
Jim Carrey thinks that sometimes you have to be a daredevil, even though your comfort zone screams at the idea.
“If I had never ventured beyond being a stand-up comic, then I would be sitting in my house today working on my Leonardo DiCaprio impression.”
47. Morgan Freeman
Finally, Morgan Freeman tells us about stepping up and taking on roles that seemed unachievable at first.
“I am not intimidated by lead roles. I am better at them. I do not feel pressure. I feel released at times like that. That is what I am born to do.”
48. Tom Hanks’s Acting Tips
The legendary actor Tom Hanks has a few acting tips to give away:
“Act wherever you can … If you are in a circumstance where no one is paying you or offering you the chance to perform, make it yourself. You can make a theater in an empty gas station or the basement of a church. You can go off and find a place to perform. There is this tendency to think, ‘I would like to be an actor. How do I get the chance to act?’ If no one is asking you, create it yourself. And never ever turn down the opportunity to go somewhere and perform.”
49. Zendaya’s Acting Tips
Zendaya might still be regarded as a newbie in the industry, but that does not take away the fact that she is talented and has a lot to offer:
50. Bryan Cranston’s Acting Tips
Bryan Cranston rose to fame after playing Walter White in Breaking Bad. However, he had to endure years of struggle before that.
“Know what your job is. About 18 years ago, I had this cognition I realized that I was going into auditions trying to get a job … And that was not what I was supposed to be doing. An actor is supposed to create a compelling, interesting character that serves the text, you present it in the environment where your audition happens, then you walk away. And that is it. Everything else is out of your control, so do not focus on that.”
51. Denzel Washington’s Acting Tips
Often regarded as one of the world’s best actors, Denzel Washington has a few acting tips to share:
“Dreams without goals are just dreams. And they ultimately fuel disappointment. Goals are on the road to achievement [and] cannot be achieved without discipline and consistency.”
Denzel Washington’s Acting Tips
52. Millie Bobby Brown’s Acting Tips
Millie Bobby Brown shares her acting tip on how authenticity is crucial for a great acting career:
“It has to come from within, it has to be real, it has to be authentic. As long as you have those three main factors, you are going to find the passion. And nothing is ridiculous nowadays. You can actually be anything that you like, and everyone accepts who you are.”
Millie Bobby Brown’s Acting Tips
53. Vivica A. Fox’s Acting Tips
The popular actress has a few tips to offer:
“My advice to any young actress starting out? Well to become a triple threat. To be able to sing, dance, act because you never know what the role may call for, you know what I mean? You may have to do action, you may have to sing, you may have to dance—you never know. And just be true to yourself. Do things that make you happy. Do not force things. If it does not feel like it is a good fit for you, do not force it, and do not do it.”
54. Harrison Ford’s Acting Tips
The legendary Indiana Jones has dropped a few pearls of wisdom in the form of acting tips for beginners:
“The only advice I have ever offered young actors is to try and figure out how to do it for yourself. Never be caught by the idea that you can imitate someone else’s success. As much as you might admire what someone else does, do not try and imitate that. Find your own way. Find your own voice. Find your own feelings. And that will give you a unique opportunity.”
55. Henry Winkler’s Acting Tips
Here are acting tips by Henry Wrinkler:
“If someone is sitting at home and thinking about being an actor, I would be honest about my ability, I would train my ability, I would make sure that I have worked on my tenacity and my gratitude because I have said this before, tenacity gets you where you want to go; gratitude does not allow you to be angry on the journey. And then when the time is right, I would get up and grab life by the horns.”
56. Christopher Plummer’s Acting Tips
Getting acting tips from the legendary actor Christopher Plummer is always beneficial.
“Go do plays. Go to the theater. You can make money but always go back to the theater where you can learn your craft. [What] you learn there is just as important for the camera as the theater. It gives you such confidence, because if you can play and be heard in front of a live audience, then there is nothing to scare you in front of a camera. So do that because then it will change your whole body. It is not just looking at you in a close-up, it is your whole body and your whole voice and your projection.”
Christopher Plummer’s Acting Tips
57. Alan Rickman’s Acting Tips
The late and legendary Harry Potter Actor Alan Rickman’s acting tips can be priceless for actors and aspiring actors.
“Forget about acting … because whatever you do as an actor is cumulative. So I say go to art galleries, listen to music, know what is happening on the news, in the world, and form opinions. Develop your taste in judgment so that when a quality piece of writing is put in front of you, your imagination which you have nurtured has something to bounce off. And then you have to start learning about courage. You have to be courageous with yourself on stage emotionally.”
Acting Tips for Beginners
Many aspiring actors enter the field of acting with a lot of dreams in their eyes. However, developing a professional acting career involves dedication, planning, and a little luck. Follow these acting tips to make a name for yourself as an actor.
Prepare a Schedule: Using the time between jobs and auditions to develop your skillset is the most distinctive approach to making the most of it. Create a schedule that resembles a typical workday: Each day, get up at a fixed time and devote yourself to refining various aspects of your craft. Include voice exercises, full-body training, and script reading in your everyday routine. Maintaining a consistent performance will hone your abilities and put you in the best possible position to ace your auditions.
Networking: Working in large industry hubs like Los Angeles or Rookie York City might be scary for new performers if they develop friendships with fellow actors. In the entertainment sector, networking among your peers is crucial. It would help if you also considered networking with upcoming filmmakers who might be interested in casting you in their film or stage production. When networking, seek connections with other professionals, not in the entertainment industry. In the process of networking, forming a contact can impact your personal and professional growth.
Collaborate With Your Peers: When you find a community of like-minded creatives in the entertainment industry, give a thought about how you might work for free or on a low budget. For example, you can put on a live theater production if your organization contains performers, screenwriters, and directors. Your group can make a short film or web series based around your apartment if you have a friend who owns a camera and lighting setup. You can meet up with your acting colleagues for character studies, table reads, and rehearsing, in addition to creating new material. Your new acquaintances have the potential to form a fully formed creative team.
Search for Representation: While fresh actors are not likely noticed by central agencies such as WME, CAA, or UTA, you can join hands with a smaller acting agency. A talent agent can help you get more auditions. First, however, you should research to ensure the agency fits your needs. Consult with current clients, look for reviews online, and ask your peers and acting teacher if they have any experience with the agency. Next, consider hiring management if you want to write and perform. Managers might be a better fit for writers and directors, but they can also help actors build their portfolios.
Be Polite to Casting Directors: Casting directors are constantly searching for young actors and seasoned actors to meet their client’s casting needs. Be polite and professional while submitting your headshots and resumes to casting directors. As a general rule, it is best to hold a professional association to sidestep launching the thought that you are trying to befriend them to get the job.
Attend Acting Classes: Acting is a skill that involves a lot of practice, re-assessing, and fine-tweaking. Between employment and auditions, taking group classes and training with a personal acting coach can be a fantastic way to hone your craft. In New York and Los Angeles, numerous private acting schools cater to working and aspiring performers. These classes can help you develop your talents while introducing you to new people.
Practice in Front of the Camera: Many actors begin their careers in live theatre, which requires a distinct set of skills from on-camera acting. When viewed via the camera lens, what appears to be a mild facial expression may appear to be over the top. Record your rehearsal on your cell phone, then go over your on-camera acting work to check how your face and body language are seen on the screen.
Be Punctual: Arrive fifteen minutes before the planned meeting time, whether you are going to a rehearsal, a film set, an audition room, a talent agent’s office, or the first day in a drama school. Being on time demonstrates professionalism and indicates that you value the other party’s time. Conversely, arriving late to a rehearsal or audition might make you appear unprofessional and agitated, jeopardizing your ability to give your best performance.
Do Not Ignore Your Mental Health: Show business is a cutthroat business with a high rejection rate. As you might need to audition a lot of times before getting a callback, it is critical to boost your confidence to accept rejection and negative feedback about your performance. Meditation, yoga, or mindfulness activities are excellent ways to help balance work-related stress. In addition, think about seeking assistance from an expert in the field of mental health if you find changes in your attitude, sleeping habits, or eating habits.
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Patience, tenacity, luck, preparation, and precise timing are all needed for professional acting. If you are an aspiring actor, you must approach the job with professionalism, putting in the necessary practice and networking to land the desired role with the help of the acting tips mentioned above.