Depending on your role, sometimes getting into character can be challenging. You may want your character to come across to the audience a certain way, but struggle with how to be effective in your role. There are several ways that you can mentally prepare yourself to become your character. With a little practice, you’ll begin to feel more comfortable taking on a variety of characters.
One way to get into character is to familiarize yourself with the time period your character lives in. Research what kind of political, social, economic or other challenges your character may have faced, simply by living in a certain era.
If your character has physical challenges, prepare for the role by living as though you really have those same physical challenges. For instance, walk with a limp, use only one arm for daily tasks, or go through your day finding ways to understand and communicate if you couldn’t hear.
Think about all the characters in the story. Aside from learning your lines, think about what those lines would mean to the other characters in the story as well. What is your character’s relationship with each one? When you begin to see your character through the eyes of other characters, you may begin to understand your character’s thoughts, feelings and motives a bit better.
Try to go through your normal day off-set with the mindset of your character. Think about how your character would react to stressors or happy moments in your day. Speak with your character’s dialect or from his or her life experiences. Soon, you will begin to see that your character is either very different from you or very much like you and it will give you insight as to how to portray the role.
When you find ways to get into character and truly feel like your character, you’ll achieve the goal of your acting becoming so effective that your audience forgets the story is fictional.