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Directors Tell the Story, 2nd Edition by Mary Lou Belli, Bethany Rooney

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Chapter 8

Blocking and Shot Listing, Part One

You tell an actor while rehearsing a scene, “Why don’t you walk over to the desk and sit down?” The actor replies in front of the crew and the rest of the cast, “Why would I do that?” Right at that moment in this hypothetical rehearsal (let’s say the script is a cop drama), his character wants to get a direct answer from another character. So he’d rather walk over and get in that person’s face. But you’re telling him to shy away, put something (like the desk) between him and the person he’s questioning. Your direction doesn’t make any sense to him, so he questions you. It’s embarrassing for you. It looks like you haven’t understood what his character is trying to do (intention), and now that actor ...

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