Via kottke.org, David S. Cohen notes that the technological transition from film to digital video is having an unexpected effect on acting styles, one that may prove as revolutionary as the introduction of sound in the late 1920s.
For actors, that additional experimentation means an entirely new way of working, says thesp Marley Shelton.
Shelton appears in both parts of Grindhouse: Robert Rodriguez’s Planet Terror was shot digitally, while Quentin Tarantino’s Death Proof was shot on film.
With film, says Shelton, “there’s a beginning, middle and an end between ‘action’ and ‘cut.’ As an actor, one is trained to listen for cues such as ‘roll sound’ and slate, and you use that moment to prepare and go on a journey as your character for a few minutes or seconds. You use that time to suspend disbelief for yourself. In that 10 seconds, you’re sort of going into a zone.”
But, Shelton says, when shooting digital, the freedom to keep rolling means “you’re sort of sifting for diamonds. It’s great in that you can probe deeper in certain moments, but it’s less conducive to riding the impulses your character is having chronologically.”