How Much Of An Actor’s Character Is There Own

How Much Of An Actor’s Character Is There Own

Did you ever think to yourself when you’re watching a movie “I wonder what they are like in real life?” I know I have many times. Or that feeling you get when you don’t think you like an actor because you think you know what they are like in real life? In the end, you really don’t know them and they actually could be completely different than the idea of the personality you think they have.

Growth As An Actor

An interesting topic for conversation that I found is the correlation between musicians and actors. Similar to musicians, actors will often take on the characteristics of their mentor. The mentor can be self assigned or just someone they admire, the same happens with musicians. From The Beatles to Jimi Hendrix all musicians have someone that influenced them. Sometimes the actor can take the image of their mentor on for a brief period of time just to acquire the skills they want from that mentor. I remember reading that about Ryan Reynolds. He talked about Chevy Chase being an early inspiration to him and that is particularly noticeable in National Lampoon’s Van Wilder. However, following Ryan Reynolds through the years, you can see a development of not only his acting skills, but the characteristics of his developed style. Sometimes it’s all about training. Actors that are more formally trained, seem to develop their styles later than self taught less method actors. More on this later

The List

Anyway, we put together a list of actors we think are very similar to the characters they play and may just be exactly like the characters they play. Seriously though, how do you really determine that? A lot of times I will go and seek out an interview from the actor just to see if I am correct about the personality. One of two things will happen. You will see an actor that is still acting in real life or you will see the genuine actor’s personality show through.

Here is our short list:

Bill Murray – We know that even though he developed his style using the satirical, sarcastic humor. We’ve noticed that he is pretty sarcastic in real life. So we think he is one of those actors that shows his personality through his characters.
Morgan Freeman – He is on this list because we think he is a true character. He doesn’t take any bull, understands his human qualities and because we think he is a smart actor, he draws a lot from either personal experience or having the knowledge to know how in any given situation, how that character would react. He has a lot of obvious Stanislavski’s system.
Will Ferrell – Although not always as flamboyant as his characters, we think the core is there. He is just a funny guy.
Tom Hanks – We followed Tom a long time. Even back to his “Bosom “Buddies” days and beyond. He is true to himself and although he is more serious these days and living in Italy, we think he is the genuine article.
Denzel Washington – A straight shooter, a great actor that knows how to bring out experience and personality.