Film & TV

Demo: Working With the Set, Props, and Camera

Natalie Portman

Lesson time 05:49 min

Natalie walks you through a sample scene, pointing out important questions to ask the production designer and director. She also shows you how to work with the set, props, and camera.

Natalie Portman
Teaches Acting
Oscar-winning actor Natalie Portman shares the techniques at the heart of her acting process—and teaches you how to tackle your next role.
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Make every role extraordinary

Natalie Portman began acting professionally at 12 and won an Oscar before she turned 30. As a self-taught actor, she uses personal techniques to create compelling, complex characters. In her first-ever acting class, Natalie shows how empathy is at the core of every great performance, how to bring real-life details into every role, and how to build your own creative process. Get ready for your breakout performance.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

Natalie is awesome! Great overview of being an actor.

I have not completed yet but so far spectacular!

The Course was Amazing and informative. Natalie is a great human and I am Glad I got to learn not just Acting but being a good Human over all!

Natalie Portman is brilliant in this class. Its gratifying to see how she integrates real humanity into her art.


Frank B.

I like the more practical lessons but the director should have used a steadycam.

Cecilia R.

Natalie Portman did a fantastic job mapping the scene for the actor's performance. She guides the student through each step and possibilities that YOU as, an actor, can face in the Theatre stage of the film set. Get inspired and do it!

Natalia K.

This is so odd. She didn't ask the set decorator is it ok to spill coffee all over the bed, or mess with the papers. She knew she can break the flower vase. Yet she broke it in a corner where the camera couldn't catch it. Not the best example.

Lydia P.

What a fun lesson! The only thing I'd ask for is more! I'd love to see her get to do another take or two, just to show us what else she might have done and what she might have kept the same. This was an incredibly helpful lesson and gives me more perspective on what my limits or freedoms can potentially be. Yes yes yes!

Katie M.

Laughing so much at boxers being thrown over balcony. This just shows how much of a genius Natalie Portman is. So creative! This has inspired me to push myself further!

Donna W.

When I'm not acting, I'm often working crew; Art Dept, Set Dec, and Props. I, for one, was very nervous when she poured the cold press coffee on the bed because no one said a word about the mattress having waterproof covering ... and I would have never put water in a vase that might be thrown. To each their own. I loved every minute. Excellent information for those new to set.

Nowa C.

I'd say there should be a lot more demonstrative scenes throughout the lesson plan as the one in this section: section 17.

Iddo G.

But.. next time throw the vase to a place the camera sees it break, let us enjoy! ;)


This was such a fun lesson to watch! It was so cool how Natalie was actually able to show us all the possibilities you can do in just one scene, and it was really helpful to see something like that play out right in front of you. I was also so satisfied when she did end up breaking that vase haha!

Robert A.

Wow! This is truly one of the most helpful and amazing things I've ever seen being done for a Masterclass! Thank you very very much Natalie, Sally, Julian, Spencer & the entire team! It's right up there with Herzog standing up and showing us all how to do the Klaus Kinski or Kinski spiral! Thanks a bunch!