To kick start the current newsletter, some advice from Morgan Freeman and “The Dude”…
To put the above tips and much more into action, classes return from Tuesday 21 April; with the Monday Extension advanced class commencing again on 27 April.
I’m looking forward to working with our ongoing students again, and I’d like to extend a warm welcome to the new students commencing classes with us this term.
Term 2 Master Class
Next up in the master class program is the seriously fun and intense Armoury for Actors master class with tutor/armourer Tony Garland.
The full day course is held at the Botany Pistol Club and covers all aspects of the authentic handling and discharge of firearms in film and television drama.
The Screen Actors Workshop is the only acting school in Australia to run this type of specialist course and the skills gained are gold on your resume; as in, a great talking point when speaking with casting directors, producers or directors.
For further details refer to course flyer attached to your newsletter link email
Prufrock & Co
Thanks again to those students who performed in the “armies on the march” scenes on 29 March in director Greg Perano’s second feature film, Prufrock & Co. Greg was extremely happy with everyone’s attitude to the work and with the high standard of professionalism displayed by our students. Greg also said the incredible range of talent from the school has made the film far better than he ever imagined. High praise indeed!
In fact, Greg was so impressed with teen students Jess Grosbard, Lily-Ann Alexander, Charlie Belik, Jess Reid and Katerine-Ann MacKinnon-Lee, that he’s written additional action scenes for the teenagers; along with another scene featuring my character (Black Army leader Josefa the Intoner) and my young teen warriors prior to them facing their first battle with the opposing Red Army – from which, against all odds, they emerge victorious.
Well done for a great day’s work to Charlie Belik, Brad Eggins, Damian Taylor, Jess Grosbard, Jess Reid, Tony Dreise, Trevor Shipton, Katerine-Ann MacKinnon-Lee, Lily-Ann Alexander, Paul Millett, Kerry Housea and Vera Polianskaia.
I’m looking forward to working with you again when production resumes in a few weeks time.
High Time Post-Production Update
The short film High Time, starring Laura Tate, Jess Grosbard, Samantha Picello, Trevor Shipton and Juvahn Victoria fell way behind its post schedule due to a 9 week wait for repairs on the school’s editor video tape recorder. Garfield Barnard, head of programming at Television Sydney (TVS), has been very patient and is looking forward to screening the completed film.
Editing has now commenced on the film and it should be ready for delivery to TVS for their program Anthology of Interest and also to the award-winning Foxtel short film program Dark Carnival, in a few weeks time.
The film highlights a timely and controversial life and death issue affecting thousands of Australian families every day. But it’s not all doom and gloom, as the story employs humour to balance the pathos.
I mentioned former student and New York actor-writer-producer Brady Kirchberg’s film Whiplash in the previousletter. The film has been receiving glowing praise from punters and critics alike and was given a 5 star rating in the March issue of Stack, the monthly JB Hi-Fi magazine.
Stack also nominated the film as DVD of the Month.
Even Madonna gave the film a rave in her interview in the current May issue of Rolling Stone magazine. Madonna and her children are fans! It doesn’t get any better than that Brady!
Well done to Allira Peters who is currently shooting her final scenes in the indie feature film, Make Them Dead.
Allira and I have been working on her scenes a day or two out from the shoot dates. The private tuition has been highly beneficial for her performance along with being a real confidence booster. Keep up the great work Allira!
It’s fingers crossed for Mona Bagherpour, who is awaiting confirmation on a principal role in a new television series after her second call back. The highly confidential, controversial and politically charged series will be shot in numerous overseas locations, and Mona auditioned for one of the principal roles.
And no, it’s not the potential white elephant federal government funded 4 million dollar tele-movie encouraging refugees to stay where they are. The program Mona auditioned for apparently pulls no punches and tells it like it really is for those fleeing oppressive regimes and war and famine, in a desperate and highly dangerous bid to build a new life in another country.
I believe Mona is well suited for the role, and I coached her for her initial screen test and again for her call back. She was impressed with the results, as were casting director Greg Apps and the director of the series. We’re all holding our breath for you Mona!
Films on DVD
Where would the Australian film industry be without Gulpilil? Along with Aaron Pedersen and Deborah Mailman, Gulpilil is an internationally recognized actor – but Gulpilil is the tribal elder, the man who opened the door for indigenous actors in this country. David has been a fixture on our cinema screens for almost 50 years and Charlie’s Country is his crowning achievement.
Poor old Charlie; befuddled by the white man’s nonsensical laws and adrift from his cultural roots, he sets off to live the old way, only to return chastened and more the wiser. A slow moving but involving film with some genuinely comic moments between Charlie and his best mate (Peter Djigirr) as they problem solve the only way they know how – with smarts and ingenuity.
A first time drug mule is caught by police when he returns to Australia with a stomach full of illicit drugs. Typical Sampson fare with poo and fart jokes aplenty, The Mule is nonetheless entertaining and provides some genuine laughs at the hapless mule’s expense.
Based on director Damian Chazelle’s experiences in the Princeton High School Studio Band, Whiplash depicts the relationship between an ambitious jazz student (Teller) and an abusive instructor (Simmons.) This film is the antithesis to Robin Williams’ nurturing teacher in Dead Poets Society. Scary teacher Simmons? Absolutely!
Class Scene DVDs
If you would like an edited copy of your past term’s scenes on DVD then see me in class or email me [email protected] and I will organize it for you. Class scene DVDs are $50-00 per term’s scenes and are a highly beneficial means of improving your technique and performance via further home study.
I’m looking forward to working with all of our ongoing students again this week and to meeting the new students in their respective classes. It’s going to be another highly creative and fun 10 weeks of workshops.
Alan Nurthen (Director)
And to end on a laugh, remember…