Why the Oscars love method actors

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  • Published on:  Friday, March 2, 2018
  • Almost half of all Best Actor and Actress awards have been won by method actors since 1951.

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    Method acting's foundational theory originated in the Soviet Union during the early 20th century. It was created by Konstantin Stanislavski and his peers at the Moscow Art Theater as a framework for systematically training young actors. Method acting became influential in the US in the ’30s and ’40s, pioneered by Lee Strasberg, Stella Adler, and Sanford Meisner, each of whom transformed and built on Stanislavski’s system.

    Today, training in method acting is ubiquitous for aspiring actors. But at the same time, the stakes of method acting continue to rise. First popularized in the US during the 1950s by Marlon Brando's generation of Hollywood stars, method acting continues to be a consistent way for actors to push themselves in new roles. But while method acting won Leonardo DiCaprio his first Oscar for his performance in The Revenant, it's undeniable that the way method acting is promoted is conspicuously marketable. Still, it has undoubtedly led to some of the greatest performances of all time.

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  • Vox
    Vox  6 months ago +157

    Getting excited for the Oscars? Let us know in the comments who you think will take home Best Picture this year, and compare your thoughts with our expert analysis on vox.com: http://bit.ly/2F7xfyW

    • JERA
      JERA  6 months ago

      Who cares who wins the Oscars? It is ALL politics and the rightful person hardly ever takes home the Oscar. I wish it would die off, WOMEN only watch it to see what people are wearing, which could be the DUMBEST reason to support ANY show. Unless i guess fashion shows. When will it die? When will people care more about their families and communities than this non sense, this is worse than becoming obsessed with some sports team... What are they going to do for you? They already do next to nothing, at least athletes give back to the towns they work in... Besides giving their 2 cents on politics what do celebrities do for communities? They are ALL the lowest forms of beings on Earth. All self absorbed.

    • gabriel mak
      gabriel mak  6 months ago

      I am from Hong Kong and I really love the videos created by Vox. May I ask if you would be considering a chinese version of the channel as well?

    • Lachelle Smith
      Lachelle Smith  6 months ago

      Vox kkpdhg

    • Tom Witner
      Tom Witner  6 months ago

      It's gonna be a political cringe fest

  • steprockmedia
    steprockmedia  14 hours ago

    It doesn't always pan out. Jared Leto. Totally not worth annoying the rest of the cast.

  • Joy H.
    Joy H.  yesterday

    1:40 Asian Hitler

  • Colette Richardson

    Whilst the performances may end up being incredible, I think it's incredibly detrimental for young actors to have this kind of method (whether or not it's the true definition of method acting is another question) celebrated so highly. Many characters undergo deep emotional, psychological or physical trauma over the course of their journey - thus making the conflict interesting. If you as an actor go to extreme lengths to put yourself in that exact place for authenticity's sake, rather than finding a parallel emotional circumstance, you run the risk of bringing your character home with you and taking on some of that trauma yourself. At the end of the day, each project is just that - a project, and I think that celebrating any kind of method that encourages bringing characters home with you will ultimately result in a public belief that actors are noble for sacrificing their personal health and safety (physical or mental) for a role. A talented actor with strong technique should be able to tell you their story without putting themself in harm's way. As consumers of art, we want longevity for our artists and safety for the human beings behind the art. While connecting to the character is cruical - staying safe is equally as important, and I think that as an artistic community, we need to recognize that.

  • Alima G
    Alima G  1 months ago +1

    0:53 my city :)

  • TrapSkateLive
    TrapSkateLive  1 months ago

    Simple. Put your life and sanity on the line to get a character across. That's an Award winning recipe in my book. #DedicatedArt 💯🎥🏆

  • Silas Rodrigues Gonçalves Júnior

    every actor has a method. Some actors claim to have the only real method, but that's bullshit

  • vieda z.
    vieda z.  2 months ago

    Triggering bc I did stanislavski in year 1 ib theatre

  • feroui hamza
    feroui hamza  2 months ago +2

    edward norton should have won an oscar for american history x and johnny depp for sweeney todd or black mass

  • Stewart Kee
    Stewart Kee  2 months ago

    The only problem is that half the actors mentioned are not, nor have they claimed to be, method actors. The authenticity that Leo DiCaprio was talking about was the authenticity you get on screen from filming on real locations rather than the artificial look you get from C.G.I. cheap video. The poster clearly does not know what he's talking about.

  • RaymondtheA.I.
    RaymondtheA.I.  3 months ago

    I'm a bit more cynical. Yeah, method acting has produced some awesome stuff, but I think we're growing obsessed with it for the wrong reasons. Actors are doing it more and more not just to create good performances, but also to display how dedicated and demanding their works is. It's like the more intense they can make the behind the set story, the more we'll take them seriously as ARTISTS and not just movie stars.
    All well and good for them, but I think there's also value in acting styles that appear more seamless, like the actor just eases into it without much effort. Sometimes actors get stuck playing a certain type, but lots of others manage to inhabit a role without forcing us to constantly think about how scenes were filmed or how intensely they had to prepare. And I find that impressive as well. I couldn't do that, just slide into a role and read my lines convincingly but with enough charisma to make them stick. On the other hand, if I ate bison liver, I'd puke.

  • enki sumer
    enki sumer  3 months ago

    The argument is based on oscar wins/nominations but wouldn't a better analysis be based on films that have influenced filmmakers? Oscars aren't the best metric of films fame, history is. Thus https://www.imdb.com/list/ls000656362/

  • bish bisu
    bish bisu  3 months ago

    Basically ... it shows effort.

  • Eric Augusto
    Eric Augusto  3 months ago

    Leonardo act on revenant was his worst compared to his another nominee IMO

  • Callie S
    Callie S  4 months ago

    I think the primary drawback of method acting is its praise for people who injure themselves for work. Losing 40 pounds in a few months or nearly getting hypothermia aren't things we should be rewarding; those are things we should be punishing execs for encouraging. An actor's ability should *not* be how willing they are to put their health at risk. It also never seems to apply to actors who actually come from the background of those characters: the main actor of Tangerine got no commendation, even though she literally *is* a trans woman living in LA who used to be a sex worker. That performance digs into painful and potentially traumatic memories, and its flawless, but the movie wasn't even nominated at the Oscars. Similar things happened for movies like City of God and The Killing Fields. Haing S. Ngor is the only Asian to win an Academy for Best Supporting Actor, but his performance doesn't receive any notice now.

  • Chris Young
    Chris Young  5 months ago

    Cynical and marketing are not synonymous. the anti money ideal that Vox regularly pushes is getting old and is poisonous. Yes ideals and dreams are the fundamental but money is the blood. Don’t hate on it.

  • Jerzy Feliks
    Jerzy Feliks  5 months ago

    It is a bit overhyped but for me the best example of what it actually is, is seeing Daniel Day Lewis as himself as compared to any of the carachters he has played. He is unrecognizable as himself. In his case I have no doubt that it has nothing to do with a hype.

  • themouth
    themouth  5 months ago

    the thumbnail featured 3 white male actors. how dare you

  • Luke Coyle
    Luke Coyle  5 months ago

    Who actually cares about the arbitrary industry insider opinions that dictate who wins these awards?

  • BonsaiBush1
    BonsaiBush1  6 months ago +1

    Method acting in The Wolf of Wall Street would be fun.