Chapter 5 of 21 from Samuel L. Jackson

Student Session: Breaking Down a Script - Part 1

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Sam directs student actors in a workshop, and the first scene on the docket is the iconic diner scene from Pulp Fiction. In this lesson, Sam helps them break down the script to gain a deeper understanding of the characters’ intentions.

Topics include: Student Session: Breaking Down a Script Pt. 1

Samuel L. Jackson

Samuel L. Jackson Teaches Acting

One of the most successful actors of our generation teaches you how to elevate your acting.

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All right, all right. [INAUDIBLE] [LAUGHTER] Good morning. Hey. Good morning. Good morning. How you doing? So thank you guys for being here. I'm glad you made it. Thank you for participating in this with me. New experience for me-- I never criticize people outside my own house. So this is going to be a whole new experience, just discussing it and seeing how it all rocks out. So everybody happy? Nervous? Yeah. Both. No, we're good. Why? Why? There's no judgment here, I mean, real judgment. A bit-- a little judgment. Yeah, a little bit. Yeah. But it's nothing to be nervous about. It's just another day, another great acting opportunity. This is what you want to do. You want to be actors. And every acting opportunity is a blessing. Every opportunity, every audition is a chance to go in and prove to somebody that you're good at what you do. And the level of confidence, the level of proficiency that you know you have-- exhibit it. Never think about getting a job or getting it right. Get it the way you wanted to do it when you go in there so that you show the best part of you. We're going to do this iconic scene from Pulp Fiction, which just happened to be the first thing we shot when we made this movie. This was the first scene that we did. An interesting piece of trivia that I don't think a lot of people know-- in the original script when this scene happens, there was a point where I closed my eyes and I shot Tim through the table and shot Honey Bunny off the bar. And when I opened my eyes, they were still there, because that's what the old Jules would have done. Oh, yeah. yeah. Ah. Quentin didn't shoot it, because he said, now if I shoot it, I'll use it. And I can't stand how you do it-- So there's all kinds of things that should have been shot that were in the script. But that's just stuff. I just put it in your head so I could just kind of see what you'll do with that, knowing that that should have happened here, didn't happen here, whatever. OK. And go ahead. Woo hoo! Let's knock it out. All right. Let's jump at it. [INTERPOSING VOICES] We have our coordination together? You want to practice pushing that top down and pulling that gun up at the same time? Mm-hmm. All right. So we start here? Have it turned around and open like that. So we're starting-- So we're starting with me here. Have it turned around and open. And she's asking-- [SIGH] Goddamn it, what is it? [INAUDIBLE] Let her go. Let her go. I'll blow your fucking head off. Tell that bitch to be cool. Say bitch, be cool. Say bitch, be cool! Baby, be cool. Honey Bunny, be cool. Tell her it's going to be OK. Promise her. I promise it's going to be OK. Tell her to chill. You got to chill the fuck out. Chill out. What's...

Get into Character

As a kid, Samuel L. Jackson stuttered so badly that he stopped talking for almost a year. Today he’s one of the world’s most successful actors, with roles in over 100 films, including Pulp Fiction and The Avengers. For the first time, the Oscar nominated star teaches how he creates memorable characters, powerful performances, and a long-lasting career. Learn to master auditions, analyze scripts, and find the truth in every role you play.

Watch, listen, and learn as Sam teaches his first-ever acting class.

A downloadable workbook accompanies the class with lesson recaps, assignments, and supplemental material.

Upload videos to get feedback from the class. Sam will also answer select student questions.

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Samuel L. Jackson

Samuel L. Jackson Teaches Acting