John Badham On Directing: Notes from the Set of Saturday Night Fever, War Games, and More (2nd Edition)


Directing Secrets From A Master Filmmaker

Action and suspense films have almost always been made by ‘seat of the pants’ filmmakers. Crafting their films on gut instinct and intuition their innate talent often leads them to exciting results.

Badham examines and explains the elements of action and suspense that are needed to make a great film. Badham also dissects the elements of any good scene from any genre of film and gives valuable tools that the reader can apply in directing and acting for maximum impact.

This edition features a brand new section: The Director’s Survival Guide to Episodic Television and explores the political danger zones faced in the ever expanding world of Streaming, Cable and Network television. Badham has created a much needed First Aid Kit for all directors and the newly expanded list of “14 Must Ask Questions Before Rehearsal”—an absolute essential in any filmmakers toolbox.

Intended for actors, directors, cinematographers, production designers or other creatives, Badham gives you the tools to deconstruct and understand your scenes. Continuing the work begun in Badham’s best-selling book I’ll Be In My Trailer, he shares more insights from talented directors on how they work with the difficult actor, rehearsal techniques and getting the best performance from any actor whether novice or pro.



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Meet The Author

John Badham, BA, MFA Yale University, DHL Columbia College, is a director and producer of theatrical films and television including Saturday Night Fever, WarGames, Short Circuit, Blue Thunder, Heroes, Criminal Minds, The Shield, Nikita, and Psych.

The Library of Congress recently selected Saturday Night Fever to be added to the National Registry of Films. Badham’s book I’ll Be In My Trailer, the Creative Wars Between Directors and Actors is used as a textbook in film schools worldwide.

His films have been nominated for five Academy Awards and two Emmy Awards. He has won three Saturn Awards from the Academy of Science Fiction and Fantasy, and the Grand Prize from the Paris International Science Fiction Festival.

His areas of expertise are working with actors, action, suspense and fantasy films. As Dodge Professor of Film and Media at Chapman University, he teaches intermediate and advanced directing.