Monologues from films / movies / TV

Here is an interview with an American director about auditioning and selected movie monologues for auditions.

I identify three challenges for actors performing monologues from films for auditions of assessment:

1. The script is only one element of performance-making in film: editing, music, lighting, art direction can all compensate for a weak script. Speeches that are great moments on screen are revealed to be weak in a solo live performance. Look for speeches in film scripts that have been adapted from novels or plays.

2. There are no reaction shots when you perform an audition monologue. Soliloquies are rare in films, other than voiceover narration. The director and editor control the reactions to a film monologue, cutting away from the person speaking to the faces of the people listening. This tells the audience how to react to the speech. You have no such power in a live audition.

3. You’re setting yourself up for comparison with the film actor who created the film performance. This is a double-edged sword: you might pale in comparison to Meryl Streep and Al Pacino or you might amaze everyone with a completely different interpretation of a well-known movie speech. Note NIDA’s warning on the movie monologues in its audition booklet: “Do not impersonate the actor’s representation of the above character in the film version.”


The Actor’s book of movie monologues
Edited by Marisa Smith and Amy Schewel
New York, N.Y., U.S.A. : Penguin Books, 1986

Here is an interview with American theatre director Nikos Psacharopoulos (

Movie Monologues – Interview

Movie monologues from the same book:

The Apartment (1960) Fran (f) & Bud (m)


The Breakfast Club (1985) Andy (m)

The Breakfast Club – Andy

Dog Day Afternoon (1975) Heidi (f) & Sonny (m)

Dog Day Afternoon – Heidi & Sonny

East of Eden (1954) Abra (f)

East of Eden – Abra

Klute (1971) Bree Daniels (f)


Last Summer (1969) Rhoda (f)

Last Summer – Rhoda


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