the armor of acting

The following in an excerpt from BackStage from a recent interview with actress Eva Green, aka Vesper Lynd in 2005’s “Casino Royale.”

“Even though Green has experienced how challenging the business of acting can be, she still loves it… To keep things into perspective, she says she tries to remember that acting is a job. ‘It’s not your life. Because of course you are using your own feelings to convey something and sometimes you can get confused, but actually it’s just a job. You have to put your golden armor on. Be strong, because you’ll go through walls and things, but just think of your passion. It’s a hard business, but it’s rewarding. And when it’s rewarding, it’s really rewarding. It’s thrilling. It makes you feel alive.”

Having recently had five auditions for dramatic roles within three weeks, all of which required me to come to various levels of tears, I have experienced just a small taste of the intensity of playing a dramatic role in a film such as the one Eva has recently played. It can be exhausting and physically and emotionally draining.

But it is so rewarding to get to be part of telling a story.

It’s so fulfilling to be able to be so emotionally connected that you are doing that character and that story justice, even if it’s just in the audition room. It really does make me feel alive.

In my girls Bible study, we are currently going through an inductive study on Ephesians. This week we discussed the armor of God. I think there a lot of similarities to putting on the armor of God, and putting on “your golden armor” in acting as Eva calls it.

As Christians we need a strong foundation in Christ in order to stand firm in our faith and live a life worthy of “the calling.” We have to prepare ourselves for spiritual battle by constantly being in the Word, learning Scripture, and developing our personal relationship with Christ. 1 Peter 3:5 tells us to always be prepared to give an account for the hope that we have.

Similarly, as actors we have to constantly be doing as much as we can every single day so that when the battle (audition) comes, we are ready for it. In Biblical times the Roman soldiers trained for five years before they were able to enter an actual battle. They also trained with swords that were twice as heavy as those used in battle.

What a genius tactic.

When they entered battle, they were ready. 

If they hadn’t trained for five years with swords that were twice as heavy, they could have very easily be killed instantly. I like to view the experience I am getting in acting classes and auditioning as my “five years” and I like to think of studying with Lesly Kahn as my “sword that is twice as heavy” because of how intense it is.

I know that when I go into battle (get a big audition/land a big role), I will be ready to deliver. After all, as Eva says, winning a role is “like the lottery. It’s like when you get it – wow – you can just remember all that you’ve been through and the weight of its reward.

But until that battle? We keep training. We keep getting stronger.

mer, andrew strong

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