Method Acting Resources

Marlon Brando - A Streetcar Named Desire

Method acting, otherwise known as The Method, is the Americanisation of Constantin Stanislavski’s “System” of realistic acting practised at the Moscow Art Theatre in the early 1900s.

The Method was developed in America in the 1930s, practised by the Group Theatre collective in New York and popularised by Lee Strasberg, Elia Kazan, Stella Adler and others.

From 1947, Method acting was taught at The Actors Studio in New York by several of the same Group Theatre members.

Marlon Brando’s performance in A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) is considered one of the first examples of Method acting on film.

Daniel Day-Lewis is widely regarded as one of the most complete film Method actors.


Brainy Quote Method acting quotes made by famous actors.

City Academy Brief overview of Method acting.

Film Enquiry A brief history of Method acting.

Film School Rejects Article explaining The Method from a film actor’s perspective. Details several ‘method’ performances on film.

New York Film Academy Useful article for students giving an overview of the Method and its history.

New York Film Academy Discussion about five contemporary actors who took Method acting to the limit on film: Heath Ledger (The Dark Knight), Robert De Niro (Cape Fear), Christian Bale (The Machinist), Joaquin Phoenix (I’m Still Here), and Daniel Day-Lewis (all films).

Penny Templeton Studio Glossary of acting terms, many of them relating to Method acting. Great article discussing some of the misunderstandings surrounding Method acting over the decades. Includes an interview with Actors Studio member Sam Schacht.

Lee Strasberg Originally published on the website, this is a comprehensive definition of acting by Lee Strasberg discussing theories of acting traditions, genuine and feigned emotion, Diderot’s Paradox of Acting, Stanislavski’s contribution, post-Stanislavski developments in acting, the actor’s qualifications and training, and the actor’s approach to role (including styles and techniques of performance).

Odyssey Difference between Strasberg’s method and Stanislavski’s System.

Quora Handy explanation of Method acting.

takelessons Three useful Method acting exercises for the classroom.

The New York Times Excellent 1987 article discussing the widespread use of The Method.


The New Yorker Interesting article “Is Method Acting Destroying Actors?”

The Richest Ten extreme examples of Method acting on film, ranging from Heath Ledgers Joker in The Dark Knight to Hilary Swank in Boys Don’t Cry.

TheatrGroup Poorly designed website, but more importantly most of the classic Method acting exercises for concentration, sense memory, magic if etc. Useful for teachers and students.

Today Article discussing Marlon Brando’s impact on Method acting.

TV Tropes Lengthy list of Method actors and characters on film. Interesting for research.

WikiHow Beginners guide to Method acting techniques.

Wikipedia Entry on Method acting.

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