Cinequest 2019 – how actors do it!

I try to get into character and deliver emotion when I read my stories at open mics. I recently read (out loud!) some of a Kittygirl story at my critique group. I did LOTS of villains, which the group liked. But the leader pointed out that I did not put Kittygirl into the narrator (point-of-view) voice.

I bought my usual Film Lovers pass for Cinequest (San Jose and Redwood City film festival). Shamier Anderson was in Negroland, a short sci-fi film inspired by the poisoned water in Flint, MI. Since his performance was mostly silent, I asked him how he put emotion into his performance. He said he gets the emotions inside, which gets them into his face, body, and eyes. It worked!

Later, I watched the movie Auggie, about a retired guy who gets glasses containing an augmented-reality companion. I met the lead actor Richard Kind there, and I asked him if he had an internal process he used to deliver emotion. He looked amused and said, “Nope, I just get up there and pretend.” That works for him pretty well.

I’ll pretend. And feel. And do the right voice at the right time even when a bunch of my supervillains argue all over each other’s dialog.