Back to One

A podcast about acting -- just the work. by Peter Rinaldi

  • Back to One, Episode 178: Jon Bernthal

    From The Walking Dead and Punisher to The Wolf of Wall Street, Small Engine Repair, The Many Saints of Newark, and this month’s King Richard, Jon Bernthal has established himself as the hard-working, all-in, go-to, actor’s-actor of the moment. In this episode, he talks about some of the elements he uses—generosity, energy management, isolation, fear-as-fuel, group strength—to do his work, the one thing all great directors have in common, why he’d be just as grateful doing regional theater, plus much more! Back To One can be found wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and Stitcher. And…  Read more

    On Nov 16, 2021
    By on Nov 16, 2021Actors
  • Back to One, Episode 177: Ruth Negga

    Ruth Negga loves words. And even someone who doesn’t particularly love words falls in love with the ones spoken by Ruth Negga. It’s not just her Irish accent. She uses words like a master craftsman uses tools. A profound humbleness. No pretension. Just the right tool, used at the right time, to make you understand, to make you believe. Obviously this goes for her acting work too. But, in true master-craftsman-style, there’s no sign of craft. You just believe. Loving got her an Academy Award nomination, her Hamlet got raves on both sides of the pond, and now Passing, Rebecca…  Read more

    On Nov 9, 2021
    By on Nov 9, 2021Actors
  • Back to One, Episode 176: Jason Isaacs

    After 30 years in the business, with credits ranging from Angels in America to the Harry Potter films and everything in between, Jason Isaacs has cultivated an approach to the craft of acting aimed at bringing himself fully into the moment. As he talks about in this episode, that approach involves not memorizing his lines, erasing all descriptors in the script, making no decisions before seeing what the other actors bring. “I try to do nothing. I try to be an empty vessel.” In Fran Kranz’s Mass—a real-time, one-room, four-hander where every actor shines—Isaacs plays a father of a child…  Read more

    On Nov 2, 2021
    By on Nov 2, 2021Actors
  • Back to One, Episode 175: Bertie Carvel

    He already had an Olivier Award for his amazing performance as Miss Trunchbull in Matilda when Bertie Carvel made his Broadway debut in that unforgettable role. He went on to win a Tony the next time he stepped on the New York stage, playing a young Rupert Murdoch in Ink. Notable recent television credits include the BBC series Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, Doctor Foster, and in November he stars in Dalgliesh on Acorn TV. In this hour, I get him to reflect objectively about his process and philosophically about acting in general. He talks about why collaboration (or even…  Read more

    On Oct 26, 2021
    By on Oct 26, 2021Columns
  • Back to One, Episode 174: Vicky Krieps

    Phantom Thread solidified Vicky Krieps as an acting force to be reckoned with. Her incredible performance in that film felt new, like a beginning of sorts. Her latest is Mia Hansen-Løve’s Bergman Island. She talks about figuring out ways to turn the difficulties of that production into opportunities to create something magical. Plus she gives us a glimpse inside her process-less process, made up of deconstruction, openness, acceptance, listening, embracing chaos, exploding the method, living with failure, holding space for the unknown, and letting intuition lead the way. Back To One can be found wherever you get your podcasts, including…  Read more

    On Oct 19, 2021
    By on Oct 19, 2021Actors
  • Back to One, Episode 173: Noomi Rapace

    Noomi Rapace returns to the podcast (first time: Ep. 43) to talk about her new film, the atmospheric, slow-burn thriller Lamb. Set in Iceland, which Noomi knows well from her childhood, the film’s landscapes feel almost like supporting characters. She talks about using the emotions they brought up in her, and the delicate way she entered grief into the performance. After I share my embarrassing animal parenting story, Noomi matches it, and illustrates why it was not hard at all to make her motherly love for the lamb baby believable. She schools us on the importance of not sticking to…  Read more

    On Oct 12, 2021
    By on Oct 12, 2021Columns
  • Back to One, Episode 172 (A Titane Special Episode): Agathe Russell and Vincent Lindon

    Julia Ducournau’s new film Titane is, on many levels, an overwhelming cinematic experience. If you’re like me, it might take a second viewing to begin to fully appreciate the astounding work Agathe Rousselle and Vincent Lindon deliver (no pun intended) to us in this film. Lindon is a seasoned actor with decades of accolades and experience in French cinema, and Rousselle is a wet-behind-the-ears newcomer making her feature film debut. But, serendipitously, as you’ll gather from this discussion, that is precisely what each of them needed in the other to energize their own performances. They talk about facing fears, letting…  Read more

    On Oct 5, 2021
    By on Oct 5, 2021Columns
  • Back to One, Episode 171: Tom Skerritt

    Tom Skerritt is the very definition of a veteran actor. MASH, Alien, Steel Magnolias, Top Gun, A River Runs Through It, and countless other supporting credits in films and television grace his esteemed resume, plus an Emmy for Picket Fences. But never a lead role in a feature film! Until now. East Of The Mountains just might be 88-year-old Tom Skerritt’s best work on the screen. It’s an assured, vulnerable, simple yet extremely powerful performance, utilizing, as he describes in this episode, his “less is more” approach to acting. He talks about what he learned mentoring with Robert Altman and…  Read more

    On Sep 28, 2021
    By on Sep 28, 2021Columns
  • Back to One, Episode 170: Alessandro Nivola

    The last time Alessandro Nivola was on Back To One (Ep. 37), he had just landed the role of Dickie Moltisanti in The Many Saints of Newark, the feature film prequel to The Sopranos, and had nearly six months to prepare for the role. On this episode, he takes us from there, detailing the extensive research, geographical immersion, voice and body work that went into the preparation process for the biggest role of his career. He talks about the importance of authenticity in every aspect of the character, how Raging Bull played a big part in keeping him on track,…  Read more

    On Sep 21, 2021
    By on Sep 21, 2021Columns
  • Back to One, Episode 169: Dominic Burgess

    When Dominic Burgess is not stealing scenes as a guest star, he’s getting raves as Jerry Summers in Dr. Death, Ember in The Magicians, and Victor Buono in the Ryan Murphy miniseries Feud. On this episode, he talks about why the vibe on a set is a big factor in his work, his struggles lately gauging what exactly “gay” means as a descriptor in heteronormative projects, why he appreciates when actors don’t let their unsettling methods infect others on the set, and how nearly every golden opportunity he’s had recently can be traced back to something that will forever force…  Read more

    On Sep 14, 2021
    By on Sep 14, 2021Columns
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