Working on a film set

Peter Hunt during an interview.

For the past week or so, there have been numerous stories about supposedly grim feelings on the Bond 25 set.

The thing is, given how unnatural it is to work on a movie, it’s surprising there aren’t even more accounts about unease on film sets.

With On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, first-time director Peter Hunt played mind games with first-time actor George Lazenby during the film’s critical ending scene.

“I would make him sit and wait and get a bit nervous,” Hunt said of Lazenby said in an interview for the documentary Inside On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. “I wanted him to feel nervous and uptight.”

It’s not just Bond films, of course. Martin Landau, as part of a TCM video, talked about feeling insecure during filming of a scene in North by Northwest.

Landau talked about how director Alfred Hitchcock whispered direction to Cary Grant, James Mason and Eva Marie Saint. Landau approached Hitchcock whether he wanted the tell the actor anything.

“Martin, I’ll only tell you if I don’t like what you’re doing,” Landau quoted Hitchcock as saying while doing a Hitch impersonation.

Working on a film (for actors, anyway) involves waiting a long time while the director of photography and other crew members get things ready to film a scene. For actors, doing a play is more natural. But films pay better.

Bond 25 may, or may not, have had a lot of tension on the set so far. Regardless, making movies isn’t a 9-to-5 job. We won’t really know how it’s going until the finished product is ready for viewing.

2 Responses

  1. When an actor says he/she learned something from a Director is a most interesting comment. Would love to know what they mean by that. I think the Director’s job is fascinating. In order to make a movie they have to coordinate (maximize) every element involved, from a foundation that begins on paper to the illumination of film! All the elements they handle (with assistants) are massive. Script vs. dialogue (interpretation), background vs. atmosphere (physical props), lighting (continuity vs. emphasis). Managing and motivating personalities (talent vs. ego), dealing with constraints (budget vs. obstacles). They have to manage all “four corners” of a box (the vision) to create a product that at minimum will sell, and at most be completely memorable!

  2. as usual the press is desperate for any news so they take the smallest thing and magnify it . The Internet abhors a vacuum.

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