First Run Features has released a new trailer for the documentary, “Creating a Character: The Moni Yakim Legacy.” The film chronicles the influence instructor Moni Yakim has on students of his Julliard dance division over the years. Rauzar Alexander is directing.
The official synopsis:
“What do Jessica Chastain, Viola Davis, Patti LuPone, and Alex Sharp have in common? They are but a few of the extraordinary actors who have studied under Moni Yakim at Juilliard, America’s greatest performing arts school. With interviews with Laura Linney, Anthony Mackie and Kevin Kline, this compelling portrait of the master teacher — the sole remaining founder of the school’s legendary Drama Division — takes us inside the drama classes where Moni and his wife Mina pour their love and passion into preparing the next generation of actors for the spotlight.”
“Moni gave us the ability to allow us to go as far we wanted to go,” says Anthony Mackie in the trailer. Yakim has taught the emphasis and fluidity of movement as acting for over five decades. He is a founding faculty member of the Julliard Drama Division and the founding artistic director of the Performance Theater Center. Over the decades, Yakim has worked with mime companies, as well as directing performances in Isreal and Europe. An NPR profile describes one of Yakim’s exercises as “improv without words.”
The documentary features personal interviews with Moni Yakim, Laura Linney, Michael Urie, Jessica Chastain, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Mackie, Alex Sharp, Kevin Kline, Mina Yakin, Charles E. Gerber, Peter Jacobson and Michael Stuhlbarg.
Jessica Chastain, Anthony Mackie, Will Staeger, Michael Antinoro are executive producing the film. Alma Har’el (“Honey Boy,” “Bombay Beach”) also produces alongside Boaz Yakin and Kali Wilder.
“Creating a Character: The Moni Yakim Legacy” is releasing in virtual cinemas on June 19.
What do Jessica Chastain, Viola Davis, Patti LuPone and Alex Sharp have in common? They are but a few of the extraordinary actors who have studied under Moni Yakim at Juilliard, America’s greatest performing arts school.