From Natalie Portman's MasterClass

Developing Your Character Through Research

Real-life resources are invaluable for developing your character. Natalie explains how historical research, documentaries, and even YouTube videos can help you understand your character’s motivations and behavior.

Topics include: Draw Your Character From Real Life • Use Documentaries to Inform Your Character • Use YouTube as a Resource • Learn the Historical Context for Your Character • Invent What You Don't Know • Research Ahead of Time

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Real-life resources are invaluable for developing your character. Natalie explains how historical research, documentaries, and even YouTube videos can help you understand your character’s motivations and behavior.

Topics include: Draw Your Character From Real Life • Use Documentaries to Inform Your Character • Use YouTube as a Resource • Learn the Historical Context for Your Character • Invent What You Don't Know • Research Ahead of Time

Natalie Portman

Teaches Acting

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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.

Reviews

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

A wonderful and an amazing soul. So real and a joy to watch an A class actress like her. Extremely useful for screenwriters in terms of what character development means and how actors perceive that. Loved this master class and wish Natalie Portman all the best in both her career and personal life.

It was very insightful, interesting and useful! Natalie is wonderful and creative! I would love to work with her in the future!

the classes are amazing. each and every lesson is meaningful and one can really relate to. Acting is a serious serious job!!! every breath in acting has meaning. the lessons will help me to act with my 6 senses. It was a great experience and learning!

Learning the insights of the business and a working actor is incredible as it is something an institute will not teach. It has more power because it comes from a voice with experience. Thank you so much for making me believe it is possible even though I do not have an education in acting.

Comments

Kristine K.

I like the way she taught about research...she just said it. Sometimes teachers can get too wordy but Natalie said just what needed to be said. lol I think I got too wordy just now. Great lesson!

Nastasia M.

I love the article about the process the different actors have. Doing all the research which seems almost beside the script. Then using the script, but really focusing on the other person, playing off of them. Don't turn long passages into speeches.

Lee

research creates imagination which can come forth ib how brings forth the eternal spirit of the character.

Stanley K.

This lesson was great! It made me think about two different things. First Troy my character from last lesson. He blurs the lines between right and wrong in Three Kings. He ends up braking the law for his family, but ends doing the right thing for himself and the people he comes in contact with. Second I made a log line for Movie I want to write... It's called "Just Quit" of course it blurs the lines between right and wrong too...(probably change the name many times) It's about growing up in a family that runs the Nuclear Market (Bombs, mines [uranium or platinum mine or both], power plants, top secret research[i.e. propulsion], and clean up) I may include wanting to running for president. Being I like to study politics so much. Its main story starts in high-school (I may start with church scene where a boy or girl is asked what they want to do when they grow up), it starts with one boy and two girls and their friendship, accounts apart and together. Anyways this assignment and lesson really is making think about all the characters and development I want to put into each. And of course studying and researching the character Troy some more... I love it!

habiba C.

This was beyond helpful. There is no was on earth we would ever find these tricks of the trade of other successful people and what they did to master their characters. What I enjoyed most is your authenticity and your code of ethics that you bring to the set and to this class. As a muslim army veteran I loved the explanation. Spreading love and light

Carline V.

I feel incredibly lucky to learn from the best, Natalie you are fantastic. Its an honor honestly feel very blessed to experience this. Thank you

Ali

Awesome! Glad I got access to the masterclass. So excited to move forward with the next chapters.

ALICIA S.

Your research on female musicians makes me curl into depression. I’m like a loner, just not by nature. Gawd, what to remember? Established facts are fabulous especially for real people roles. Good lesson.

Matthew B.

I am going to research Winston Churchill for this Lesson. The Darkest Hour with Gary Oldman is a great Film and I already have the DVD. A Place to start having Fun !!

Sydne H.

As a director, gaining a stronger grasp on what actors do to prepare for their roles is already so insightful. I love how Natalie is clearly so passionate about what she does and wants anyone with a drive for creating to feel the same.