Directing Style – John Frankenheimer

The director of Seven Days in May considered the scene in which Kirk Douglas’s character visits the president to be a masterful scene of acting which would have been technically very difficult for most actors to sustain.

John Frankenheimer had done similar scenes on many television shows, and every camera angle and shot was extensively planned and rehearsed as was the acting in the scene by the actors. Frankenheimer paid particularly attention to ensuring that the three actors in the scene were all in focus for dramatic impact.

Many of Frankenheimer’s signature shots were used in scenes such as this through the film, including his “depth of focus” shot with one or two people near the camera and another or others in the distance and the “low angle, wide lens” which he considered to give “tremendous impact” on a scene.

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