Judith's book, "DIRECTING ACTORS: Creating Memorable Performances for Film and Television," is the first book of its kind. Other books on directing may contain a chapter on working with actors. This is the only one to investigate in detail what Judith calls "that sometimes painful, often frustrating, but potentially exhilarating relationship" between director and actor.
Since its publication "DIRECTING ACTORS" has become one of the top-selling directing books. Experienced and successful directors love it as much as new directors, and it has become required reading at Hollywood studios, as well as at all the major film schools. It has been translated into German, Japanese, Spanish, Finnish, Korean, Greek, Polish – and translation into Chinese will be available next year.
Actors and writers, as well as directors, have been finding "DIRECTING ACTORS" illuminating and inspiring. Actors find it uniquely helpful in penetrating the process and subtext of their craft. And writers say that the book's principles go to the heart of storytelling. Readers find a deep contact with the magic and mystery of the creative process. And many say the book's communication tools and storytelling principles offer lessons in life.
"DIRECTING ACTORS" is required reading for directors taking any of Judith's courses. Directors planning to attend the Acting for Directors workshop should read it, or at the very least the first chapter, in advance of the workshop. It is recommended but not required for actors taking her classes, especially the Actor-Director Lab.
"DIRECTING ACTORS", published by Michael Wiese Productions, is available via the Internet at Amazon.com or mwp.com. You can also always find it at Samuel French Bookstores in Los Angeles and New York – and usually at many other bookstores (although it might be wise to call ahead to bookstores to make sure they have copies on hand.)
"Directing my first movie would have been impossible without Judith's book. Her insights taught me how to audition actors, how to cast intelligently, how to rehearse. When production began, I cribbed a set of Weston reminders on to a 3-by-5 index card, and kept it in my shirt pocket every single day of shooting. She saved me."
BILLY RAY, writer-director, BREACH, SHATTERED GLASS; writer, VOLCANO, HART'S WAR, SUSPECT ZERO
"I bought a copy of ‘Directing Actors’ about ten years ago, right before I directed GHOST WORLD. Looking back through it today, the thing that struck me, is how dog-eared and tattered it is, which speaks volumes about just how much I referred to it. It's a terrific book - concise, insightful, and practical - and has helped me enormously. Thanks Judith!"
TERRY ZWIGOFF, director-writer, CRUMB, GHOST WORLD, BAD SANTA
“Judith Weston gave me the greatest gift you can give to a first-time director - she gave me confidence in my ability to work with actors. What my actors didn't know is that most of the brilliant direction I gave them was ripped straight from her book, "Directing Actors". Thank god they had not read it! She is my mentor. She is my friend. I will be forever grateful for her extremely hands on and applicable advice for directing actors and I know I will use it for the rest of my career. She has a contagious love of the process and an unbelievable understanding of human emotion. I would not be where I am today if it had not been for her.”
SHANA FESTE, writer/director, THE GREATEST (Sundance 2009 Dramatic Competition); named as one of Daily Variety “10 Directors to Watch”
"Judith's method is wonderful because it is practical. She has given me numerous tools to solve problems on the set and to earn the trust of actors. Her classes and her book are invaluable resources to any director."
LAWRENCE TRILLING, director, PARENTHOOD, PUSHING DAISIES, DAMAGES, BROTHERS AND SISTERS, NIP/TUCK, MONK, SCRUBS, INVASION, ALIAS, ED, FELICITY
"A must read for any director working with actors. Directing Actors is filled with constructive information that would serve not only the neophyte but also the skilled professional director."
"I was repeatedly struck by her deep insight into the craft. The advice she offers would benefit any beginning acting student, and could even lead the most experienced actor to discover further layers of a character. This is the best kind of writing about acting."
"Brilliant and original and true. I've been recommending this book and Judith as a teacher to everyone I know."
POLLY PLATT, producer, BROADCAST NEWS, SAY ANYTHING, TERMS OF ENDEARMENT
"I think that if Judith's book were mandatory reading for all directors, the quality of the director-actor process would be transformed, and better drama would result."
JOHN PATTERSON, director, THE SOPRANOS, SIX FEET UNDER, CARNIVALE, THE PRACTICE, LAW AND ORDER
"Directing Actors is a terrific book - informative, exciting, even inspirational."
JOE RUBEN, director, THE FORGOTTEN, RETURN TO PARADISE, MONEY TRAIN, SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY
"DIRECTING ACTORS is one of the best books I have read on how to communicate with actors. As an aspiring director, it is an invaluable tool I constantly refer to. As a casting director, it is a helpful guide to giving quick, easy adjustments to actors before they are seen by producers. It is also a must-read for any actor. It's a terrific book."
ELLIE KANNER, casting director, pilots of SEX AND THE CITY, FRIENDS, DREW CAREY SHOW
"To Judith Weston - whose own work I admire. You understand the 'flickers' and the 'flow.'"
RAY CARNEY, author, Cassavetes on Cassavetes; The Films of John Cassavetes; The Films of Mike Leigh; The Films of Frank Capra; The Films of Carl Dreyer
"We found Judith Weston's book to be an invaluable resource for communicating with actors in rehearsal and on the set. We highly recommend it."
HARRY ELFONT, DEBORAH KAPLAN, co-writer-directors, JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS, CAN'T HARDLY WAIT; co-writers, A VERY BRADY SEQUEL
"A book that is exciting for beginners and extremely useful for professionals; that is both 'how-to' and 'self-help'; and one that inspires not only the mind but the heart as well."
PETER WERNER, Oscar and ACE winning, Emmy and DGA nominated director of numerous MOW's
"Judith Weston understands the complex relationship that exists between actor and director. She demystifies the psychology of actors by explaining in simple terms what they need from the director in order to bring their roles to life. Whether a first-time director or an experienced veteran, you'll benefit from listening to Judith Weston."
MARK STEVEN JOHNSON, writer-director, DAREDEVIL, SIMON BIRCH; writer, GRUMPY OLD MEN, JACK FROST
"I've been treating DIRECTING ACTORS as if I was a painter on the Golden Gate Bridge - as soon as I finish reading it, I start all over again. It's invaluable."
JOANNA CAPPUCCILLI LOVETTI, director FELICITY; editor, THE SOPRANOS (Emmy award), CUPID, FELICITY, MY SO-CALLED LIFE, THIRTYSOMETHING
"This is everything a director should know about working with actors."
STEVEN CHARLES JAFFE, executive producer, GHOST; producer, STAR TREK VI, STRANGE DAYS