Actors and Directors in our labs have gone on to work at the major studios and networks.
Ashley Romans (NOS4A2) has booked a starring role on FX’s sci fi drama Y: The Last Man, based on the popular Vertigo graphic novel.
"I'm proud to have coached actress Ashley Romans, privately, as well as have her be part of our Cinema Gym classes." (founder, Alex D'Lerma)
Just finished my casting sessions for Nomad. Everything went great! Just wanted to say thank you for inviting me to further my craft as a director in the Cinema Gym work shop.
I had the thought several times throughout the casting process of how comfortable I felt even though I had not done casting for over three years. It was because I had so recently taken your course. The Cinema Gym really did warm me up and get me back in the flow. I also had in mind brevity and precision for adjustments, as well as using the actor's vocabulary that you teach. I can't tell you how valuable it was for me. Thank you again."
I'm proud of my bookings on 'Den of Thieves.' my series regular role on the Netflix show 'Chambers,' and my re-occurring role on the ABC series 'For Life.'
I wanted to take a moment to give a very special and heartfelt thank you to my acting coach Alex D'Lerma. I have studied under the expert training of Alex for over 10 years now and due to those years of dedication I booked many jobs. Alex personally coached me from the first pre-taped auditions on through the final Producer reads. I've even hired him to prep me for out of state shoots. I am forever grateful for his years of experience and knowledge translating into applicable teaching that has brought me to a level where I am now booking lead roles for major networks. Thank you so much for your love and support Alex. There's NO WAY I could have gotten this far without you."
I learned more about directing actors in the Cinema Gym than I ever did in Film school. And it's a great place to network. A short time after joining the Gym, founder Alex D’Lerma hired me to produce the first Cinema Gym feature film, "Fear, Love, and Agoraphobia," which co-starred actress Lori Petty (Orange is the new Black, Point Break). And fellow gym director Bill Totolo was hired on as cinematographer. This was Bill’s and several gym actor’s first theatrical feature film. The Cinema Gym creates opportunities!
(award winning Producer/Director)
The Cinema Gym is like training @ a boxing gym where you learn what it takes to become a champion (Working Actor) so if you get knocked down at an audition or on set you have the skills to pick yourself up and fight on!! D’Lerma has the knowledge & inspiration to guide you as your coach & lead you to success!! I started working out in the Cinema Gym in 2006 and I still do every week when I'm not shooting a film or TV project.
I am having so much fun on my most recent ABC TV series gig 'Splitting Up Together.'
And I just wanna say thank you for the years of instruction/coaching and thanks so much for helping me out with my series regular network audition today. Your suggestions were extremely helpful. I took every note and was completely prepared & ready.
I got there and one actress was ahead of me in the room. As I signed in, I could hear the person fumbling and stopping & starting during her audition, doing exactly the thing you said most would do… "the stereo typical black woman with attitude" I also noticed the names on the “sign in” list were A-list actors. I remained focused & tried my best not to let it faze me.
Then it was my turn to audition. The Casting person called me in & she gave me instruction to do the first scene to camera (just like you said she would) and the other two scenes to the reader. As I was doing my thing, I noticed the casting director's face and could see she was shocked & pleased. After each scene she gave a huge grin saying, "very very Good." I did it all in one take!!!
So, I have you to thank for a grrrreat audition. I know I was totally connected to that script & my character.
With Alex's guidance I've managed to fill in the gaps left by film school in my Directing education.
The intimidation and anxiety I once felt working with actors is long gone. Rehearsals are now exciting periods of exploration and inspiration and my communication is much more focused and precise. Working out in the Cinema Gym allows me to flex my directing muscles on a weekly basis, allowing me to find my voice as a director, remain limber, and push myself to new creative levels. Through Alex's class I developed a short film that made it to the Cannes Film Festival.
You're a pretty awesome teacher. I really don't know how often you hear that but I think you need to hear it just like any actor needs to hear how well they do. I appreciate your support in helping me get acting roles on HBO, Showtime, CBS, TNT, and other mainstream network shows. And my award winning feature film debut. You have seriously helped so many of us grow and to become the actors we had hoped to become. You have a special way of dealing with each individual in class and not many coaches would take the time or effort that you always do. So, thank you.
I got my first leading man role in an award winning feature film ('Fear, Love, and Agoraphobia') which was produced by the Cinema Gym!
The cinema gym is unique in that we are taught specific techniques for the camera and we focus on improving our auditioning and acting for film and television. Alex has created a great workout in addition to being a supportive, confidence building acting coach. He knows what he's talking about and you really feel good after a private coaching or working on different personas in class. I've tried the big name classes in town and The Cinema Gym is in my opinion by far the best acting class in a LA. Member since 2008.
Alex. Thank you for helping my book my first feature film ('Josephine') as well as several network series roles! And everything you've helped me with for the past five years. I owe you my gratitude for all you've done for me. I wouldn't be where I currently am if it wasn't for you, so thank you again for your continued support, encouragement and training
Matthew Alan Brady
The best part of working on the NCIS: Los Angeles set was feeling like it was an extension of the cinema gym set. The difference was that they had more money, gear, and people. But that sense of orderly chaos, everyone bustling to set up the shot, the director trying to figure it out, is exactly what I experience in class month in and month out, so it felt very much like I was home. It was just like, oh yeah, they're just artists trying to get the shot and hoping that it works. I was immediately relaxed by the familiarity of it, and just concentrated on my blocking, character, etc. I laughed to myself a bit- you know how EXTREMELY sensitive I am to outside stimuli and In the past I've gotten cranky and overwhelmed- if it wasn't for begin exposed to the cinema gym workout/environment consistently, I would've let it get to me for sure. Thanks again Alex, your sauce is the best sauce in town!
How does one control chaos?
When you’re on set, you have very little room to fail or to make mistakes. People count on you to know what you’re doing. Actors put their trust in you to help guide them and not make them look like a fool.
No matter how much planning you do, when it comes to making a movie, something is always going to go wrong. The sun sets when it wants to set. An actor is an hour and half late. The camera crashes. You’re about to hit overtime.
As a director every question, problem, decision ultimately comes back to you. It doesn’t matter if it’s the first shot or you're 18 hours in and your mind is completely fried… the show must go on… You still need to get the shot. Adjust your actors. Find the truth in the scene. And then move to the next scene or location.
Luckily for me, I found a mentor, a teacher and a friend that has been invaluable to my growth as a director, communicator and most importantly a storyteller.
The Cinema Gym, created and constantly reshaped by Alex D’Lerma, is the one stop shop in building the foundation and language for becoming an actor's director. There isn’t a more supportive and freeing arena in Los Angeles that allows you to take chances and fail as a young filmmaker.
Alex is one of the few teachers I have worked with who truly understands the subtle nuances that differentiate film acting from stage acting; and is the only acting coach I have worked with who teaches both the technical principles and the emotional preparation required to execute these differences. Also unlike every other acting class I have taken, Alex helps his students not only develop their craft, but navigate the business side of the industry as well. He has given me guidance on headshots personas, strategies for agency submissions, and insight into producing original content to highlight my strengths as an actor. During my time working with Alex, I have been cast in 3 SAG projects, have secured both an agent and a manager, and have seen the quality of my acting increase exponentially. The Cinema Gym is more than a class; it is a community, and Alex has time and again gone above and beyond to do everything he can to put his students in the best possible position to succeed in this industry.
Wanted to share some good news with you! My feature film '4GOT10' (starring Danny Trejo) premiered at the Burbank International Film Festival last night. It was a neat experience to watch myself with actors I've loved for years. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your coaching. You have undoubtedly affected my career for the better.
After completing my studies as a director at UCLA I joined the Cinema Gym. I've used Alex's Gym to further hone my directing skills and it’s paid off. Alex's system for directing actors has led to one of my project's being accepted into multiple film festivals as well as winning multiple awards for Best Short, Best Actress, and nominations for Best Director.
Enrique Rico Diaz
(award winning Director/Producer)
Alex is a gem of an acting coach in LA. He made me feel comfortable instantly and his teaching techniques have helped me to book many (casting) rooms. He is honest, affordable, kind, and readily available to coach you for auditions. I always leave working with him feeling prepared and like I am ready for whatever is thrown my way in the room. I'm grateful to know Alex; someone who genuinely wants to help actors.
Alex’s UCLA & “Gym” directing classes were a great help in teaching me how to communicate clearly and efficiently with a wide range of actors. Whether you’re working on a TV show, a film, or a commercial, the one thing you never have enough of is time. The Cinema Gym classes taught me how to make the best use of my limited time, as a director, on set.
(award winning Producer/Director)
Alex,I wrapped the feature! As for my performance, I'm incredibly proud of it. I took a number of pages out of your book. I took care of myself on set, before and during scenes. I played. I used the close-ups of the other characters to not only feed them, but work out my part. This led to a great scene that, due to thunderstorms, left me with only two takes, both of which I feel I nailed. I honestly can't thank you enough. I really feel as though in the past half a year I've been working with you, my auditions and acting have really stepped up a level.
After studying in Alex D'Lerma's UCLA Directing class, Alex's Cinema Gym took me to the next level. It provided me with the vital week-to-week experience of directing and shooting actors that I couldn't get anywhere else. That steady workout, paired with his guidance, was invaluable in honing my skill as a director. Thank you Alex!
(award winning Director/Editor)
Happy new year. Mine is already kicking off on a high note as I received news that I have been cast in a leading role in a Feature Film entitled "the Iron Rose". I am so excited about this project as there are so many fantastic elements to the story that can showcase me in a variety of ways - including fight choreography!!! I am so grateful for all of your coaching and support, this opportunity would never have been possible without your guidance.
Starting with Alex D’Lerma’s UCLA directing class and continuing in the Cinema Gym, I found that getting on my feet and directing real working actors every week has helped me build and maintain those directing muscles that everyone needs to succeed on set, not to mention the confidence it gives you, and the possibilities for creative collaboration.