Compare And Contrast Essay

Topics: Theatre, Actor, Film Pages: 6 (1565 words) Published: December 1, 2014
Juan Matos
Professor Ingram
The Huge Battle Between Theater & Film
"Actors, never feel your bodies, make your bodies feel you." This quote comes from one of the most gifted stage and screen actors alive. Kevin Spacey has truly mastered the art of both theatre and film acting, although clearly this is not an easy task. These two extremely different types of acting contrast in numerous ways. A movie portrays any situation on a big screen and a wide variety of audiences. Theatre can be described as a live performance on a stage in front of an audience and is rarely done the same way twice. Filmmaking involves a number of discrete stages including an initial story, idea, or commission, through scriptwriting, casting, shooting, editing, and screening the finished product before an audience that may result in a film release and exhibition. Film and theatre are both very popular forms of entertainment in the field of performance arts but the modern acting, and production of film makes it a better and more popular form of entertainment.

Firstly, theater and film contrast in many things as it is said before, and one of them is through their historical backgrounds. Theatre first originated in Greece in 6th century BC. According to the magazine History World, “The ancient Greeks established the categories of tragedy and comedy 2500 years ago that are still used today, it is said that this foundation was led by the followers of Dionysus, a god of fertility and wine”. They kept up with the god’s special interests and came up with this performance art that we call theatre. They developed dramatic structure, acting, and theatre architecture (at least for the Western world). So basically, each time one sees a performance, he/her are participating in theatre history, meaning that theater has been around for as long as we can imagine, but filmmaking is way more modern and recent. In contrast, filmmaking originated in the 20th century. Each inventor added to the progress of other inventors, culminating in process for the entire art and industry. However, According to Bryan Manley, “With the landmark depiction of a train hurtling toward and past the camera, the Lumière Brothers’ 1895 picture La Sortie de l’Usine Lumière à Lyon (Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory), was only one of a series of simultaneous artistic and technological breakthroughs that began to culminate at the end of the nineteenth century.” One could give the credit to the Lumière Brothers for starting the era of the process of making film but other than that, other inventors of the 20th century added more and more ideas to the process of filmmaking making it much modern and recent than theater. Not only are theater and film different cause of their historical backgrounds, but also because of their production and acting.

Furthermore, theater and film are very different from each other because of their production. The production of a play and film contain the materials of it, which is the script of the actors in the film, or the screenplay of the actors in the play. According to David Green, “In a play, repetition creates an iconoclastic image of the story, so the material meaning the script, or words and acting of the play have to be the exact same in every place that they are showing the play but in film, repetition is not needed and the movie material can be edited as many times as it can”. The words of the play become iconic and any errors of dialogue will sound like fingernails on a chalkboard but television and film is different because the audience has never seen the writing. It is fresh and largely written on the fly. Words are being changed right up until shoot times in many cases. Therefore, at a TV/film audition, an actor can make mistakes or small changes without consequence. That brings up the other main difference between theater and film, and that is, acting.

In addition, the third main difference between theater and film is the acting. Even...

Cited: DeKoven, Lenore. "The Similarities and Differences between Film and Theatre." Mastering Film » : The Similarities and Differences between Film and Theatre. Web. 04 Nov. 2014.
"Film Acting vs. Theater Acting." Infoplease. Infoplease, Web. 04 Nov. 2014
Green, David P. "The 3 Major Differences Between Stage and Screen Acting." Backstage Magazine, 12 Sept. 2013. Web. 04 Nov. 2014
"HISTORY OF THEATRE." History World. Web. 02 Nov. 2014
Hohenstein, Serena H. "Mamma Mia! Stage Vs. Screen - Emertainment Monthly." Emertainment Monthly. 24 Jan. 2014. Web. 05 Nov. 2014.
Knopf, Robert. Theater and Film: A Comparative Anthology. New Haven: Yale UP, 2005. Print.
Manley, Bryan. "Moving Pictures: The History of Early Cinema." Moving Pictures: The History of Early Cinema (2011): n. pag. Web. 04 Nov. 2014.
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