One great thing about David Mamet is that he’ll just bust out saying some ridiculous stuff. Like anything that comes to his head. Only he’s such a verbal genius, that anything he says comes out sounding completely correct, and absurdly pithy to boot.
When I was studying acting, the best book I read on the subject was Mamet’s, which is saying something because he didn’t even try to hide his contempt for actors. His basic stance was that an actor’s job is to say the words loud enough for the audience to hear. I’m not exaggerating, either, that’s really his thesis. It has sub-theses, like how acting training is just a hustle run by failed actors, but that’s the main thrust. It was GREAT.
He was on Fresh Air a couple weeks ago to talk about his new TV series “The Unit,” which is co-created by Shawn Ryan (“The Shield”). I haven’t seen the show, but this kind of made me want to. On the other hand, though, who wants to see something written partially by David Mamet, and partially by Another Guy?
The interview STARTS with Mamet saying: “The trick is to leave everything out. That’s the whole trick to drama.”
Not one of the tricks. The WHOLE trick.
Speak of the devil, and he shall appear: David Mamet on this week’s The Treatment (MP3 Link)