As a director, one of your most important jobs is eliciting great performances from actors, and like playing a guitar, it is a skill that is developed and nurtured over time. You’ve heard the term “actor’s director” before, but what does it really mean? Why does it matter? And how can you become one?
An actor’s director is simply a director who respects actors, can read their wants and needs, understands the craft of acting, and knows how to optimize an actor’s performance with simple, short directions (or no apparent direction at all). While actors routinely compliment directors by bestowing this title upon them, becoming an actor’s director means far more than earning the respect of those in front of the camera. In truth, the best directors are actor’s directors by definition. The temperament and skill set of an actor’s director yields superior performances, and it leads to more fulfilling actor-director relationships. By studying the strategies, attitudes, knowledge base, and habits of actor’s directors, you too will be on the path to better performances in your own films and series.