"I was an actor myself. The process of acting is extremely painful. I know that doesn't sound logical to most people, but all good work is self revelation. That's true for performing artist as well If I can help them to feel any more secure, and any more unafraid of releasing whatever part of themselves they have to, I understand that I can help them that way. They feel that. I don't even have to articulate it."
About This Interview
Sidney Lumet was interviewed for three-hours in New York, NY. Mr. Lumet spoke of his work as an actor on the stage before he became a director in television. He recalled his work on the television series Danger (1950-55), and You Are There (1953-57) both "live" dramatic shows of the time. He discussed the use of blacklisted writers on these shows and how the material they wrote often reflected the era of McCarthyism. He also discussed other television dramatic anthology series he directed for including Omnibus, Goodyear Playhouse, The Alcoa Hour, Studio One , and Kraft Television Theatre. He described his direction of the well-known television special The Sacco-Vanzetti Story and The Play of the Week: "The Iceman Cometh" both of which aired in 1960. He spoke of his transition to a feature film director with "12 Angry Men" in 1957 and his work on such other feature films as the Paddy Chayefsky's satire, "Network" (1976). The interview was conducted by Dr. Ralph Engleman on October 28, 1999.