I don't know if it's my recent grad school excursion, or all the work I've been doing teaching children acting, but I've gotten a lot more diplomatic and clear recently. I was at an audition yesterday for a host-like gig, two guys arguing about who their favorite comedian is. It's light, it's playful, from the text and the network and the casting director I could tell that we should be arguing - but not really be in a fight, they never want that.
Of course I end up partnered up with a guy who seems a little green. I don't know what tipped me off, but I could just tell. We read through it a few times, I'm relived I have more lines and can steer the scene a bit. Then he asks, well, suggests, 'Hey - we should probably get comfortable pushing each other a bit, make it a little more a fight. Fight is in the title, you know."
This is the moment in which my newfound maturity overcame me. I didn't roll my eyes, I didn't bemoan my luck getting paired with him. I just said "I'm totally comfortable doing that, but I really don't think it's called for by the text. I just don't see it in here, these guys are arguing, playfully about comedians, not about boxers. I'm happy to do it, but I really don't think it's in the tone of the scene." Luckily he acquiesced almost immediately. It's worse when they fight for an idea they are clearly wrong about.
As soon as we stepped in the room, the casting director said " now remember, some people have forgotten, you are actually friends, and this isn't that big of a fight."
But look how mature I was! Like a real grown up!
-- Shawn Dempewolff