Acting history films, 1960 - present

1960 - 1980

As we can learn from acting history films are the result of a tremendous development.

The 1960s saw the dawn of a new era in the American film industry. Following the Second World War, society was keen to see motion pictures deal with everyday moral and social issues which reflected the Zeitgeist of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. Unavoidably, this shift in attitude brought about a major change in acting and the Stanislavski method of acting became ever more popular as actors sought to identify with their characters and performances in order to enhance the experience for the audience and reflect the new style of motion picture.

Like any history in acting history films were influenced by the given circomstances. In spite of, and perhaps due to, the industry upheaval, the film industry began to suffer financially in the 1960s due to the introduction of television and the rise in production costs for motion pictures . This cause film makers of the 1970s to evaluate and explore new options for . Throughout the 1970s, blockbuster action films were introduced to cater for the youth of the time. Films such as Jaws became massive hits – the aforementioned film becoming the first to gross over $100m. The introduction of Star Wars and related films also helped greatly to reinvigorate the ailing film industry. Coupled with the introduction of new special effects, the industry finally looked like recovering. And we see in the line of acting history films getting better, faster and more interesting because of the historical changes.

1980 - 2000

Another step in acting history films today were influenced by the 1980's. Teen classics continued into the 1980s with films such as Flashdance and the Back To The Future trilogy. Although these films lacked originality, the utilization of new-found technology allowed the films to appeal to new audiences and directors such as George Lucas and Steven Spielberg became household names through their usage of new technology. Due to the inevitable increase in production cost, movies were only produced if box office success could be assured. As a result, Hollywood stars began to demand outrageously high salaries for their performances.

As technology advanced throughout the 1990s, a new intake of talent quickly emerged. Films such as The Matrix demonstrated the new technology available to film makers and the introduction of stunt mechanisms and CGI graphics meant that the role of actors and their associated styles began to change once again.

2000 - present

As cosmetic surgery became more widespread throughout the 21st century, film makers began to opt for prettier and skinnier women and more muscular men. Throughout acting history films today were at that time ready for a new approach. The demographic of actors moved towards a younger, 'hipper' style with many older, established actors finding themselves out of favour and out of work. With many roles being taken by computer-generated extras, the role of the actor in 21st century motion pictures had changed forever.

In the line of acting history films today often don't show the actual actor. You don't see them, but they are there. Like in Disney's, Dreamworks and Pixars animated movies not only the voices but also some characteristics of the actor can be seen in the drawings. Some examples:

You can recognize actors in Dreamworks "Shark Tale" because sound and movement of the original actor was used to create the characters.

moves of the actors are used to make all the creatures in Avatar become real

It might almost seem as if new technology makes actors dispandable, but that is not true. In all movies actors will be needed, because the real human emotion, reaction on the give circomstances can only be captured from the actor himself. It is just a really interesting new way to act, like voice actor in the studio.

Making it in Hollywood

Take a look at this DVD

Making It In Hollywood with Tab Hunter (Actor), Sally Kirkland (Actor), Frank Cavestani (Director)

Watch this DVD and see what working in Hollywood requires. You might find some interesting tips on things you were struggling on!


"Only a great actor finds the difficulties of the actor's art infinite." - Ellen Terry


Here is another tip:

If anything stand in front of a mirror and practice various poses and expressions and think about how they make you feel and how you would feel seeing someone else doing it.