Monday, May 2, 2011

Multiple Personality Disorder, Hollywood Style

by carol
"I think I’ll end up directing one day as well. I don’t feel as though I’m really ready at the moment but I love the process of filmmaking and I love the process of storytelling, I always have, and I want to be involved with all of it on a deeper level."  2007 interview with Alex O’Loughlin
Many actors talk about their hopes to write, produce and/or direct. I am not aware of any producers or directors who have expressed their desire to act. Hmm, wonder why….

Some actors don't want to just wait for a good role or story to come along or for their agents to find them work. They may establish their own production companies and actively search for or create projects to produce.*

Actors and actresses may be seeking more control of their own careers. This opens up options for actors who want to write their own scripts, or who find movie scripts they are interested in performing. Then, when they go to a studio, they maintain some “ownership” of the property and this can give them the opportunity to do the kind of work they want to do.

Some of the more spectacular successes include:

Coen brothers and George Clooney
George Clooney has embraced every aspect of movie creation as director, producer, writer and actor. In his 90+ film and TV appearances, his roles have ranged from “star” to “village extra.” He and his producing partner Steven Soderbergh decided to close down their Section Eight production company (responsible for the Ocean's movies) after six years of partnership. He and Grant Heslov then founded Smoke House which is producing the film The Ides of March, due out in October 2011. This film stars, is written and directed by Mr. Clooney as well.

Clint Eastwood also acts, directs, writes and produces in Hollywood. And although his film appearances only number 66, he can include composing as an additional skillset he has to offer. Mystic River and Million Dollar Baby are just two of the films that feature his soundtrack contributions. His production company is Malpaso Productions, which he formed in 1968. The company's first feature release was Hang 'Em High

Those who question whether actors are simply indulging their vanity for additional credit should know that Eastwood is the director of films which earned Oscar nominations for ten unique actors and he has earned Best Director recognition for himself. He has said, “I love every aspect of the creation of motion pictures and I guess I am committed to it for life.”

You don’t necessarily have to wait to be an established and successful actor to branch out in the business.

Most film buffs know the story of Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, friends and struggling actors in the 90’s, who co-wrote the screenplay for Good Will Hunting and starred in the movie.

Robert Pattinson has stated he wants to set up his own movie and music production company.

"I think if we get to seven years (with Hawaii Five-0), by that stage we will both be producers (Alex and Scott Caan). We will be running the show, making obscene amounts of money, and we'll both be perfectly happy with the way things are going because we'd both have creative control."  2011 interview with Alex O’Loughlin
Of course, even without a director or producer credit, actors can still make their presence felt. Katharine Hepburn never officially directed a film. But once, when asked if she ever wanted to direct, she blithely replied:
“Oh, I’ve directed all my films. I meddled in everything, which is just what a director does. I meddled in the set decorations, the cinematography, the cast’s costumes, the cast’s performances. That’s what a director does. He meddles.”


  1. the Hepburn quote is fantastic!

  2. Carol, I've seen a few directors trying to act....
    some of them should rather not try. And with Alex, I think if you are a little bit OCD, you want to control everything. Hope he gets his chance BUT I'll rather see him in front of the camera.