The Director and his Actor Look at Footage Showing Preparations for an Unmade Film (2)


Dir. Morgan Fisher, 16mm B/W Sound 00:16:00

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The Director and His Actor Look at Footage Showing Preparations for an Unmade Film (2) (1968) seems to teach a lesson: that cameras take their best pictures with the least interference from humans. Paul Morrison, the actor of the title, takes a number of photographs around picturesque Cambridge, Massachusetts. The pictures rehearse a number of whimsical clichés, and as a result, it is not always clear what they are intended to describe. Fisher, the director of the title, restricts himself to taking pictures of Morrison in the act of photographing. His task is to record an activity, and his success is complete on his own limited terms. There is also a third view of the scene, that of the cinematographer who makes a record of the recording. From the first shot, this view reveals the great disparity in height between actor and director. This instance of disproportion assumes the status of a running gag. Fisher towers over Morrison in every shot, and in an awkward, comic moment, he even perches on a high stack of pallets to photograph Morrison. In The Director and His Actor… Fisher stages his first self-portrait and lets it be known that the director has a sense of humor about himself.
[Source: William E. Jones, "Morgan Fisher: An Impersonal Autobiography"]