Search This Blog

Monday, August 29, 2016

Thoughts on So You Want to Be An Actor?

I enjoyed watching this instructional movie from 1993 called "So You Want To Be an Actor?" about navigating New York show business as an actor, like doing auditions, getting an agent, finding the right technique, and being a knowledgeable and well-rounded artist.

I watched it because it was hosted by Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara, being a charming elderly couple in various Manhattan locations, like subways and restaurants. I found them to be warm and kind, with cute scripted quips (Stiller: "I love taking the subway. I picked you up on a subway." Meara: "No, I picked you up." Stiller looks at the camera with a "womp womp" expression), and liked their presence. They would have interview segments with famous acting professionals like Uta Hagen, Christopher Walken, and Roscoe Lee Browne, offering show biz advice, as well as with NY casting agents and theatre people.

I also liked seeing how Manhattan looked ca. 1992, and seeing how things were different pre-Internet boom, like people mailing their resumes in and searching the newspaper classifieds for apartments, jobs, and casting calls. They interviewed a lot of NY actors, and one described almost rooming with someone who had a $750/month apartment on Avenue B, but her room would be a closet in the guy's room, and she bailed. I also recognized Jason Woliner, a former child actor, who is now a TV producer and director (The Office, Parks & Recreation), and works a lot with Aziz Ansari (and is the Jason he jokes about in his standup). I just enjoyed the special more as archival footage of early 90's NY, and the cuteness of Stiller and Meara as hosts.

No comments:

Post a Comment