James McAvoy: Actors are told to lie about their ‘struggles’ to win awards

James McAvoy sighting at BBC Radio 1

When I think of actors trying to push the narrative of “this film was the most difficult thing ever, no one understands My Struggle,” I think of two examples. One is obviously Leonardo DiCaprio’s successful Oscar campaign for The Revenant, in which the Oscar campaign was almost entirely “Leo struggled/was sexually assaulted by a CGI bear/got pneumonia.” I also think of George Clooney’s The Monuments Men, oddly enough. The film had studio support, Clooney directed it and starred and he brought along an A-list cast of his friends. There was little drama with production and the story was already well-known to history buffs, and yet Clooney and company tried to sell the movie as the most untold story ever and the hardest film Clooney has ever made and no one wanted to tell this difficult story, etc. That wasn’t the case, but that was the press around the film.

Obviously, studios have caught on to a narrative that “sells.” The “struggle” narrative sells movies and helps Oscar campaigns and it’s all pretty stupid at this point. People within the industry were openly mocking Leo’s Oscar campaign (he still won the Oscar though) and The Monuments Men came and went with critical shrugs and no Oscar campaign. In a new interview, James McAvoy points out the obvious, but it’s still nice to hear that we’re not imagining things: actors are being told that they should oversell the “struggle” of their filmmaking experience so that they’ll get awards.

James McAvoy has revealed that film stars are told to lie about how gruelling a role was to win awards. The Scottish star claims many of his contemporaries have been told to exaggerate how tough some film roles are – be it from piling on weight to sleeping rough – in the hope of picking up a gong.

He said: ‘I’ve been told so many times that if you want to win awards, you need to start making it sound like you’re f***ing sweating blood every time you step on set. People want me to say things like, “That was the hardest thing I’ve done! It consumed me completely!” For me it’s just my job and creatively speaking, it didn’t leave me shattered— but I feel that people are disappointed when I say that.’

Talking to TheTalks.com, he said: ‘I really, really love it [acting] and I hope that every job allows me to love it. When I’m doing it, there’s nothing else. You get up at 6:00 am and you don’t get home until eight or nine and then you do it all again and it’s so exhausting — you have no life when you work. If I’m spending half my life doing that, then half my life is entirely that. But the other half is bringing up my kid and being a stay-at-home dad. So, comparatively, acting is just my job. And I think that that approach makes it easy to separate myself from roles. I’ m relatively mentally healthy and I think it’s hard to separate yourself from roles when you’re not.’

[From Metro]

It would be interesting to consider this from a psychological-consumer analysis, as in: why does it help to sell a movie by telling the audience that the film was incredibly hard to make? Why do audiences want to hear that? Do we put more value in the storytelling or performances if we think the actors and filmmakers really put themselves through hell to make the movie? I’m really asking. If I want to see a movie, it’s because the trailer looked great, I’ve heard good things about it and I want to see the story unfold. I don’t know the behind-the-scenes stories of some of my favorite films. Like, did Ralph Fiennes have a hard time filming The English Patient? Did Holly Hunter really put herself through hell for her performance in Broadcast News? I have no idea, because I like the movies so much and I just get absorbed in the performances and the stories. Isn’t that how it should be? I hope that more actors follow McAvoy’s route and refuse to sell their movies as some giant struggle. It’s become the go-to Oscar campaign trope and it’s tired.

James McAvoy sighting at BBC Radio 1

Photos courtesy of WENN.

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85 Responses to “James McAvoy: Actors are told to lie about their ‘struggles’ to win awards”

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  1. Mia4s says:

    He makes a great point. No one seems to be allowed to say; OMG it was such a challenge and it was so wonderful! Or, I had such a great director and crew it was a pleasure everyday!

    Nope you have to be DiCaprio and get sexually assaulted by a bear. 🙄

    Another reason I’m more done than ever with the Oscars!

  2. NotSoSocialButterfly says:

    He is very high on my Forever Dong/ HGF list.

  3. Kate says:

    How refreshing is his honesty!! ❤️

    • INeedANap says:

      That was a great interview. It’s still work — and I don’t doubt shooting schedules are long and intense — but it’s just work. It’s why I am one of the lone dissenters in regards to Daniel Day Lewis, like dude, it should not take you 3 years to prepare for a role.

      • third ginger says:

        I don’t think Day- Lewis has ever said that. Reports of his preparations are wildly over exaggerated. Also, McAvoy, cute as he is, has never been near an Oscar. And don’t tell me he does not want one.

      • third ginger says:

        I did not mean to sound snappy, but there is so much misinformation about DDL. It’s largely myth. Also, it would be the rare actor indeed who did not look up to him as a giant in the profession. Can’t help it. He has been my favorite for 35 years. Also, James has a chance to be nominated for SPLIT. My guess is he will gladly shake every hand in Hollywood to get it.

      • Miss S says:

        I’m totally with you on DDL.

      • Miss S says:

        third ginger, (commenting on your second comment), shouldn’t DDL himself try to shut down those ridiculous rumors then? I’m not a cynic about acting preparation or abt the emotional toll it can be felt by actors who take it seriously, but after a certain point, it seems that some are ok to be revered by that extreme dedication and I guess that’s what Mcavoy tried to explain. It’s a job he loves, it implies effort but selling the over the top narrative seems to be award bait and DDL seems to have embraced it. Even the statement of him retiring feels off-putting to me, no matter how good he is. It is obvious pp are going to ask him about it, especially when a film is coming out. I can’t see a good angle on this and it tarnished my image of him of the private non-PR person (while still side-eying the over the top acting struggle/commitment).

      • third ginger says:

        I don’t think he responds to anything like that. He does not really give interviews much. I guess I don’t really care about what you call the “over the top narrative.” I understand how that may appeal to press people,[and you are right that they would be part of a campaign] but the respect he has among other actors can’t be faked. Also, critics do not care about preparation: they only care about the end product. And they worship DDL. Agree to disagree. Again, I hope I have been respectful. Can I ask you what actors you like?

        Also, to get a critic’s view, you could read Own Gleiberman’s essay in VARIETY.

      • Miss S says:

        In my understanding everybody is influenced by the struggle narrative, critics included because it is translated into serious committed actor. And while I agree with your observation that most actors worship DDL, how could they not? It would be a heresy to even say something negative about him or even Meryl Streep, the two go to actors nobody questions in terms of acting ability (even though Meryl takes risks and I admire that even when it doesn’t work).

        I admire Cillian Murphy very much. His career is so diverse, he is a professional but not precious about the craft while still being the real deal. He does a lot of theater too. Oh and doesn’t like to do press bc he believes the quality of journalism sucks but understands why is it needed. I actually saw an interview with him yesterday about the show he is doing now.
        I also like Christian Bale, but he is one of those who can easily go over the top, even though he doesn’t speak much about it.

        I’ll look for it, thanks!
        EDIT: I had actually read that article from Variety and didn’t like it ^_^

      • third ginger says:

        Thanks for the nice response. Murphy and Bale are indeed terrific.

      • Miss S says:

        And Philip Seymour Hoffman! How could I forget him!?

        :)

      • perplexed says:

        I’ve never really seen James McAvoy give a bad performance (I don’t think), so I think he does deserve an Oscar nomination (even if he may never come near one), although the competition on the men’s side is usually pretty stiff.

        I did wonder why DDL put out the announcement he’s retiring. I thought actors simply quit acting without much fanfare when they didn’t want to do it anymore.

    • SM says:

      I agree. And also how refreshing to hear an actor thinking about his craft as a job, not the extension of the whole universe and actors being the guardians of its’ secrets. To be honest at this time I think more efficient oscar campaign would be to talk like this rather than the struggle. It gets old and it sends my eye balls into deep rolling mode I know how my brain looks. And most of the times struggle is reduced to struggle of physical transformation

  4. mia girl says:

    First – The Mac! Thank you. Any day with a James McAvoy post is a GREAT day.

    Second – I love him even more for saying this. And it has gravitas because he is such a good actor. He’s saying, hey you don’t need to show your over-the-top method, you just need love of the job and a good work ethic.

    Third – I guess the struggle ties into the “suffered artist” troupe that has existed for centuries. Something about suffering for your art makes it more interesting I suppose? I do like to learn about how actors/directors/writers help create a piece of work – but definitely feel like it hit peak with the “I slept in a bear” DiCaprio thing and Leto as Joker crap. Let’s hope it is swinging it’s way back to being just about the performance and less about the “process”

    • Miss S says:

      Abt your third point, I remember reading about how some actors feel guilty for having such a ridiculous job and to compensate for that they try to make it harder than necessary to prove they aren’t that silly for playing pretend. Does it make sense?

    • ichsi says:

      I can’t believe I almost missed an article about my favourite actor in the whole wide world on celebitchy. Yay! for them covering it and I agree with everything mentioned here. Plus the stuff about how it has become a ridiculous marketing tool.

  5. Maya says:

    There was a great article in The Atlantic about exactly this issue called Hollywood Has Ruined Method Acting. From the piece: “The underpinning of this strategy is the belief that to create great art one must suffer. But method acting has also become wrapped up in a brand of identity politics that tries to make the art form resemble more traditional forms of male labor, and by extension limiting the kinds of actors who receive praise.”

    • Ramona says:

      Excellent excerpt.

      “..resemble more traditional forms of male labor”. Yes. Acting was considered too effeminate so they found a way to mascularize it. They did the same thing for Chefs. As Gordon Ramsey once said on a US chat show “women are cooks, men are chefs”. You see it in the fashion industry too, where suddenly the designer who is almost always male isnt “just a tailor”, he is a tortured artiste who labors with a great vision (of unwearable sh…t). Just like Da Vinci, only this time clothes.

    • third ginger says:

      What people call method acting is not method acting. There are a variety of methods.[ Actors studio, Stanislavsky, Meisner] What people are talking about are silly people like Leto doing silly things to attract attention.

  6. OhDear says:

    It sounds like they are selling two stories – the story in the film, and during promotion, the story of making the movie. A story where the protagonists FACE and OVERCOME STRUGGLE and HARDSHIP is seen as more compelling than one that’s something along the lines of “Oh, this wasn’t hard at all. Everyone was on time and organized and it was fun, really.”

  7. Sixer says:

    I want them to have the most extreme histrionics possible so that I can laugh at them and call them narcissists. Taking the piss is usually far more entertaining for me than watching whatever half-baked film they’re putting out. But y’know. I’m a bad person. So I probably shouldn’t be so open about it.

    That they call for the sal volatile every time a film wraps has absolutely NO impact whatsoever on whether or not I watch the bloody thing. I watch a film if I like the topic, the director, or the lead actor (as an actor, not a headline generator).

    • LAK says:

      See also X-factor.

      The year i gave myself over to it was 2008. My favourite aunts watched it as a family time thingy. By the end, we thought any contestant who didn’t weep on cue, tell a sob story was a sucker who would lose.

      Guess who won? Thingymibob with a great voice and ability to cry on cue, W-A-I-L-E-D at the appearance of her idol beyonce and had a gloriously wretched sob story.

      Pity i can’t remembet her name or anything she’s done since.

      Oh well, onwards and following year with their rounds of sob stories and ability to cry on cue!

      • Sami says:

        That sounds like Alexandra Burke? I dont remember any of the others but her I do remember because her rendition of Halelujah is still my absolute fav. Sorry but it still drives me to tears. Speaking of those shows, whatever happened to Adam Lambert?

      • Sixer says:

        LOL! My late mum used to be like that with Strictly!

      • hogtowngooner says:

        I’d tack on America’s/Britain’s Got Talent shows to your point. I don’t regularly watch the show (don’t have cable) but it seems whenever I catch parts of it there is ALWAYS a sob story/narrative coupled with a strange or mediocre performance that results in tears, judges with their jaws dropped and an audience wildly clapping/standing ovation with triumphant music playing. Every. Single. Time. And that stupid golden buzzer feels like it’s been hit in every single episode. The shameless desperation for “viral content” has desensitized me to reality.

      • LAK says:

        Hogtowngooner: the only contestant who genuinely moved me was Susan Boyle. So unexpected. Looking at the youtube video still brings me to tears especially when you see the disdain and mockery turn to astonishment.

      • BrandyAlexander says:

        @Sixer, Adam Lambert is touring with Queen again. They just played Las Vegas last weekend. I was so sad to have missed it, and people I know who went said his performance was amazing!

      • M.A.F. says:

        Chopped is another example (it’s a cooking competition show on the Food Network). I started to notice that the last few seasons have more and more people giving a sob story as to why they are either there or why they need the prize money.

    • third ginger says:

      Sixer, this is why I love your posts. Your attitude [not to mention hilarity and snark] are the opposite of my hero worship of performers I like. I have no trouble making fun of those I dislike [especially politicians] but when I like someone, I am all in. Therefore, your takedowns of even your “internet boyfriends” are a good balance for me.

  8. Tiffany says:

    I want to go to there.

  9. Pumpkin Pie says:

    I don’t trust what actors say in interviews and do not buy a ticket based on their stories of “hardship” and such.

  10. Jamie42 says:

    Great comments by McAvoy. The oscars are bankrupt. We still like to watch the spectacle, but the campaigns and the narrative theme attached to them has taken over considerations of performance.

    • Jegede says:

      Absolutely.

      Most of the wins no longer stand the test of time.

    • Jellybean says:

      Agreed! Weight loss, weight gain, a false nose, an issue of the day, a crying scene with snot and a biopic. If you don’t include one of those you don’t stand a chance. UNLESS you are one of that small group who always gets nominated, regardless of how may better films or performances are out there. That problem will only be solved the voters have to prove that they have seen all the films to vote in each category.

    • lily says:

      Agreed! Awards campaigns are full of tricks to win one and not represented the best performance anymore, it is a bussiness and if you have sponsros with money and do ass kissing you can win a fraud award.

      • third ginger says:

        Many people feel this way about awards. What performances do you think have been overlooked? I can always name some for every year.

      • Lily says:

        third ginger: Wat are your choices? I like Emma Stone but that Oscar should have been for Isabelle Huppert. Really Viola Davis, i love her, should won for Best actress not supporting.

  11. Mazzie says:

    And that would be why I never watched the Revenant. Eff off, DiCaprio. Albertans do just fine in winter.

    • Jellybean says:

      I tried to watched it with my husband. We managed to get about 30 minutes in and gave up. The honest trailer is worth a look though.

  12. Skylark says:

    Well said, James, but I’d expect no less from him. Apart from anything else, he’s a Glaswegian and knows only too well that if he started talking about his struggle to inhabit a character, he’d be quite rightly laughed out of and very likely banished permanently from Scotland.

    But it is one of my pet hates, this failure to just let the talent/story/film do the talking. Sadly, this really irritating and deeply cynical ‘phenomenon’ is everywhere now, you see it all the time on eg. RTV talent shows where everyone has a ‘poor me’ sob story about their struggle to get to where they are, in the hope that it’ll make them more sympathetic to the viewing audience.

    The tragedy is, it so often works with the mawkish who go for that sort of sugary ‘dying grandma/dog/hamster’ bollocks, at the expense of far superior but less cynical talent.

    • I Choose Me says:

      you see it all the time on eg. RTV talent shows where everyone has a ‘poor me’ sob story about their struggle to get to where they are, in the hope that it’ll make them more sympathetic to the viewing audience.

      Hallelujah, I have found my poeple. That sh-t has long been a pet peeve of mine.

      • Trashaddict says:

        It’s oddly akin to what I imaging would happen in a group therapy session gone wrong where people start trying to one-up each other with their traumas. (Nothing against therapy or therapists. Just makes me think of that).

  13. Jellybean says:

    My favorite was when they interviewed The Hurt Locker cast when they were a bit drunk. The interviewer commented that they all seemed to be good friends and asked if they knew each other before filming. Not really, but they did get to know each other really fast since they all got dysentery and ended up sharing ditches between filming; I don’t think they ever credited that with helping to make their performances more authentic though, they just thought it was funny, in hindsight.

  14. truth says:

    He is very honest and speaks with candor. That is the PR machine at it’s best at work with HW actors and their agents. They speak and spill and want people to buy the facade they are spilling. Perfect example Brad Pitt GQ article. He wants you to feel pity for him and he didn’t mean any of it. Don’t forget the Oscar wins are basically who campaigned the best or studio spent the most money campaigning for a certain film. It’s not even worth watching because you know it is BS.

    • lily says:

      100% agreed! At least Brad has years working hard, there are youngers that go for the short way, cut borders to get it, Supernovas that dissapears quickly. Love James.

  15. spunk says:

    I am severely sexually attracted to this man. yoh!

    • Esmom says:

      You and me both, spunk.

      • NotSoSocialButterfly says:

        See my post above re: forever dong/ HGF (hot guy Friday for new -comers).

        Sigh. I miss HGF. Please, CB and Kaiser, consider rekindling an occasional HGF post. TYVM!

  16. nemera34 says:

    The reasoning behind this is probably because the public thinks Acting is easy. That you show up and do nothing. So saying it is hard and you worked for it… well tells the audiences it is not as easy as you would think. Acting is not hard.. but it ain’t easy either.

  17. Lucy says:

    I loooooove him. I! Love! Him!

  18. lily says:

    Thanks god for James, I love him so much. He si such a great actor and has been having a good year. So humble and down to earth, his honestity is so refreshing. I hope he gets the recognition he deserves. So tired of PR Machines and tacky campaigns to get awards, so pitiful. I forgive Leo, he had been struggles for so many years giving great performances that i gave him a free pass for his campaign to get an Oscar. Maybe James could give advice to some of his friends to behave with dignity and keep it cool.

    • CP says:

      @lily….re Leo. It’s an interesting comment. The thing that gets me is, emmmm why? Why did he bother campaigning?. He was already perceived as one of the greatest living stars. Did his oscar award change your or anyone’s pereception of that? Will he get “better” roles now? Lol. No. There’s just one reason for it…..Narcissism

      • Lily says:

        But is Leo, i like him because he is what he is and he had this oscar dream since he was ignored for Titanic. Mostly all actors wants awards but not all of them are going to play Hollywood games (thank good!). I lost respect for Oscars, i can mention two recently Oscar frauds that are embarrassing but i dont want to give those winner any free publicity. I feel Cannes is more about art and talent.

  19. third ginger says:

    I understand what everyone is saying, but some recent Oscar winners have not done this at all. Brie Larson? Emma Stone? Is it more a male thing? Also, another Scott who would not be overdramatic about her job is Tilda Swinton.

    • Skylark says:

      But no one’s said they have.

      This is not about Oscar winners, it’s about those who feel – or, as James said above, are ‘encouraged to feel’ by the machine behind them – that talking up their struggle and their suffering will get them ahead in award terms.

      And yes, I do think it’s way more of a male than a female thing. Male actors, on the whole, are far more precious and ego-led and self-indulgent than female actors.

    • Miss S says:

      Maybe I’m forgetting someone but I have never heard an actress talking about or talked about “being method” in the same terms we usually hear abt male actors. I bet they would’ve been called difficult and rude if they behaved in the same way.

      • third ginger says:

        I think that’s true. As I commented above, there are many methods, and what we have come to see referred to as “method acting” is not really any of them. Jared Leto pranking people is lunacy, not method anything. He was just the silliest example I could think of. Maybe that fits the “male ego” theory. Also, classically trained actors, I guess , have a different approach [Sir Kenneth B., Tom H.] I was just trying to think of people who went to RADA.

      • Skylark says:

        @Miss S – I can’t think of anyone either. Certainly, I’ve read countless interviews and seen and been part of (audience) many ’roundtable’ talks where actresses talk about how they approached ‘difficult’ roles but it’s always been more about what they learned/gained from the experience rather than the blow-by-grandiose-blow ‘how I suffered for my art’ fest that so many male actors indulge – and are encouraged to indulge – in.

      • Miss S says:

        @Skylark, your description of those round tables feels accurate to me. I guess the only actress I can remember that was talked abt in similar terms was Charlize Theron but it was more about her willingness to be ugly which is another different can of worms.

      • Trashaddict says:

        Short memory folks. Natalie Portman, The Black Swan? Does that ring a bell?

      • Miss S says:

        Yes, but that wasn’t really about being method, even thought the “struggle” narrative was there yeah.

    • LAK says:

      Female Oscar winners do the weight gain/ ugly-ing up to get the award. See Charlize Theron and Halle Berry and AnnE Hathaway before her desperation for Oscar overshadowed the ‘i had to lose weight and shave my head’ aspects of her campaign.

    • perplexed says:

      I think Natalie Portman did the “struggle narrative” and the “she can perform as well as a ballet dancer who has trained for years” narrative as well.

      I think if women went so far as saying they were ghosting their partners for a year (or whatever it was Charlie Hunman claimed he was doing), I do get the feeling they’d probably get slammed and everyone would think they were nutcases though.

  20. Margo S. says:

    Damn. James is fine as hell. But I have to say, I am a huge film buff and love watching making ofs and behind the scenes interviews. Even if it is contrived, I don’t mind! It’s fun!

  21. Bella bella says:

    I love James McAvoy!! Always a pleasure to see him on the job.

  22. Well says:

    I didn’t care for The Revenant and don’t consider it one of Leo’s best performances, but I still thought he was good in it. A lot of people have reduced his performance in that to just suffering because of the admittedly OTT and obnoxious awards campaign it had, but I find that unfair. With that said, I agree with everything James said. He’s a cool guy and a really interesting actor.

    • third ginger says:

      I agree. Separate the performance from the campaign. Having watched actors for well over 50 years, you never know what one is willing to do to win an Oscar.

  23. detritus says:

    Two thoughts
    1. viewing art or any stimulus is impacted by the company we keep and the statements we hear
    2. human psychology tends to put a greater value on situations or tasks that are difficult or arduous to perform. A good example is hazing. The worse the hazing is, the more investment the person has is the group. To admit that they didn’t value the group commesurate to the pain inflicted, would be to admit to an error in judgement and create cognitive dissonance.

    Wiki has an article on the Effort heuristic too, which basically says our lazy brains want to ascribe value based on effort. This is especially the case when people do not have a lot of information on the task, effort is seen as a stand in for quality.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effort_heuristic

  24. Mannori says:

    Shia LaBeouf. Leo Di Caprio, Ben Foster, sometimes even Tom hardy. and a bunch of other thirsty dudes (is always just dudes, no female method actresses, of course not.) All poseurs looking for attention and awards recognition. Desperate. All of them are miles away from the real method acting (which is much more than just stay in character and do with your life the cat same things your character does) all of them just mediocre lazy actors.

    • Green says:

      Also their managers, accountants, lawyers, whatever need to be paid and often are actively pushing them to be thirsty for it.

      • Mannori says:

        yes, of course in showbiz there are those eternal parasites living off of actors and celebrities encouraging and enabling behaviours which will lead to more $$ in one way or the other, because that’s the main gola for them: with awards come more job and better job opportunities. But it’s mostly them: the actors themselves their huge egos and their thirst for recognition and praise.

  25. Green says:

    I appreciate him making this point and being so honest about it. So much hype these days. Remember Natalie P and Black Swan and the dancing controversy (her head was cgi’d on a real dancer’s body and the dancer came out to clarify you don’t become a pro ballerina with a year’s on-off training)? Think it’s gotten worse in the internet age since everyone’s competing for eyeballs. I’m blessed enough to be sufficiently advanced in age to remember Oscar season wasn’t so bad before, though you did have the odd “Daniel Day Lewis spent three months in a wheelchair” stories. Maybe it’s the volume of stories out there. But it’s all selling method acting and out-PR’ing the competition these days.
    Movie industry isn’t the only one subject to this type of “external context” thing either. Often selling a novel/non-fiction book is probably 50%+ about the author’s “authenticity” and background.

    • Green says:

      Essentially the PR story surrounding the actual product is part of the product these days. We can’t seem to enjoy/consume movies and documentaries and books, etc (on the whole as an industry) without the background context. Any individual “product” has to now be understood in terms of the large popular culture in-out-left-right tide cycle rather than taken at it’s own merit. Not agreeing it’s right but just an observation.

  26. manta says:

    It’s funny reading that people can’t think of any female doing that. The first names that popped up when reading that are “almost died for the sake of my aaart “Portman and Hathaway.
    Cotillard played that card too, Piaf allegedly almost consumed her and endagered her health.

    It didn’t work for her at the end, but Watts campaign for The Impossible was a little heavy in the struggle department.
    The pandering to peers to get awards, using this approach, is well shared by both sexes.

    • Abby says:

      Yeah I immediately thought of Natalie Portman and black swan and Anne Hathaway for Les Mis.

      Acting is SO HARD y’all. It’s only worth it if you’re worked to the bone! /sarcasm.

      I enjoy the backstory behind some films, but stuff like Charlie Hunnam ghosting his girlfriend and Shia leBeouf anything… it sometimes turns me off to actually wanting to watch the movie.

  27. Norman Bates' Mother says:

    I believe that people like Tom Hardy or Dustin Hoffman really are so method that they make their work as hard as possible just for their craft, but I don’t buy that someone who loves luxury as much as Clooney or DiCaprio suffered for art. Pretending to be a martyr truly works on people though. I once had a heated discussion about it on this page and many people were against me when I said that I consider a person with McAvoy’s attitude to be more of an actor than someone annoyingly method. Being an actor is all about making people believe that you really are your character. It’s one thing to lose some weight or shave your head and another to act like a brat for months. McAvoy convinced me that he was a disabled man in Inside I’m Dancing without having to live like a disabled person for a year and it really says more of his skill to me, but other people argued that method actors show commitment to their craft and they deserve more accolades – and that’s why most of them have to at least appear method to get awards.

    How was it acting when Dustin Hoffman had to physically exhaust himself to the point of almost passing out every time he had to look exhausted or when he mentally abused Meryl Streep by saying awful things about her dead fiance just to make their fight scenes look convincing? His roles are all great and believable, but I also believed that Fassbender was an evil slave-master and according to Chiwetel Ejiofor, he was nice to him between takes and was taking him to play paintball after work (Hoffman got that Oscar though). I would also say that Dicaprio deserved the Oscar even if he addmitted that he was sitting in a heated trailer drinking cocoa between takes on The Revenant, because I find him to be a great actor.