Summer Film School and Actor’s Workshop: Christian Petzold, Nancy Bishop, Richard Cook and Shani Klein
The analysis of world-famous films with director Christian Petzold within the Summer Film School, advice to actors from casting director Nancy Bishop and the founder of The Lisa Richards agency Richard Cook, and the interesting experience of actress Shani Klein

Summer Film School. Christian Petzold, German director, jury of the International Competition Programme:

“Today I do not want to talk about myself – I want to talk about cinema. We'll start with a few scenes from films. There are two scenes I want to discuss – the first one is from François Truffaut’s work “The Soft Skin”, 1964, the second – from “The French Connection” by William Friedkin, 1971

About François Truffaut’s “The Soft Skin”: “We watched forty seconds of this film: an old literature professor observes a woman who changes her shoes behind a curtain, sees her bare legs and falls in love. In his interview 20 years after the premiere of the film, Truffaut said that this scene was unsuccessful. He showed the legs for too a long a time, and the man’s face – only for five seconds. In film, it should be the other way around – not like in advertising, where you always show the object: cars, smart phones. Films show people who want something. In this case, the man is the focus, not the woman’s legs, but here we lose him. I learned a lot from his mistake.”

About “The French Connection” by William Friedkin: “In this car chase scene, I see a moral idea. Gene Hackman is a policeman who must go to a poor neighbourhood. You see people who just live their lives, and then, suddenly, someone’s shooting, wants to kill Gene. We see him through the rifle’s ocular, from the position of the sniper – this is the moral position of the camera. At that time, there was no better car chase scene than this one. They succeeded because they had an idea – it’s not just about skill. The point is that the killer comes into our ordinary life, but at the same time, we have sympathy for him. The director did not think about effects, but about morality.”

Actor’s Workshop. Nancy Bishop, casting director, producer, director, Emmy nominee:

“You have to think about what kinds of roles you want, and in which you are already involved. Select the photos that will help you move in that direction. Archetypes are various roles that are being cast. Think about what kind of role you want and what kind of archetype your photo belongs to (villain, historical character, youthful image, etc.).”

“A resume is not just a list of everything you have ever done. Do not write about all your jobs – highlight the most important things. If your film had a good director – write about that, if there were famous actors with you on a project – emphasize that, if you had a particularly successful role – put it first.”

“You must have your own website. Where do you shop? I, for example, shop online. Agent network is not very developed here, so make sure you can be found on Google.”

Actor's Workshop. Richard Cook, founder of the The Lisa Richards agency:

“Be sure to make a video presentation in English. It should contain your name, place of residence, experience, skills. If you do not speak English, the casting director will still notice your talent in any language. For the video, you do not need professional equipment – a smartphone will do.”

Actor's Workshop. Shani Klein, an Israeli actress:

“Now that I'm 32, I realized that I never thought about what I wanted to do. I always knew it was acting. I served in the army – it was mandatory – after which my father asked me what I want to do next. I answered that I wanted to be an actress, at which he just laughed. But after my first premiere, he said that I made the right choice and that I have found my place.”

“If you get a lot of refusals and criticism, that is normal. Just try to constantly change, do not stand still. I advise you to be more careful when you audition. After all, you can be pigeonholed into one specific category. Do not be afraid to have and express your opinion.”