a few weeks ago in class, we had one week where we did something different, called the criminal action problem. it's an activity where you have to think of a situation where you'd drive yourself to commit a crime. usually it involves stealing an object you need or you will miss out on a great opportunity, or be screwed in some way.
obviously the conditions weren't optimal (we weren't allowed to yell in the hallways, or dash upstairs, for fear of scaring other people at the studio, and we assumed that the door would be opened), but we made do with the situation.
the problem i came up with (late at night, thinking and thinking) was that jesse hsu and i were aspiring film directors awaiting our big break, but all tapped out of money. basically our situation was we had to get something going soon, or we'd have to give up our dreams of working in entertainment etc. my partner was set up in my scenario to be working for apple, as a panelist judge that i knew through an acquaintance for one of their filmmaking competitions, where the main prize was to be able to work with renowned directors on a big film project. she had the documents which described the contest in full detail (apple releases the information the day of the competition so no one gets a head start), so having that a week in advance would solidify our chances of winning.
for the theft, i dressed in all black and used my iphone as a light. i used canvas shoes so i'd have traction and would make minimal noise. getting into the room was a chore in itself, because the door creaked a lot when you opened it. i sneaked into the room well though and looked for the item. something caused a noise which alerted my partner (who was in bed sleeping), so i got down on the ground prostrate hoping she wouldn't see me. i don't remember ever getting so silent and breathing so heavily in fear in my life, real or imaginary.
the point of the exercise is to have the attention of the actor solely on their partner (making sure they don't notice them in the room) so that he is never thinking about himself (being in your head). it's an exercise that allows one to be mentally free of the idea of "acting" and instead be totally immersed in the moment.