WILLIAM B. DAVIS
WILLIAM B. DAVIS AT CFI CANADA'S ANNUAL CONFERENCE ON NOV 14th
William was the keynote speaker at CFI Canada's annual conference on November 14, 2021. He spoke on acting in the context of the conference "Mind, Brain, and Thought".
Dozens of books on acting exist, but none of them are quite like this. Part memoir and part master class, modelled after Stephen King’s bestseller, On Writing, the book is divided into two parts.
Part one takes readers on a seventy-year journey that begins with William B. Davis, at age twelve, riding his bicycle through the streets of Toronto to his first acting classes, and eventually leads to him starring in the long-running television series, The X-Files. From a summer theatre in Ontario to the National Theatre of Great Britain to the National Theatre School of Canada to the William Davis Centre for Actors’ Study in Vancouver, few have travelled such a colourful journey. Along the way, Davis met all sorts of familiar faces, including Donald Sutherland, Brian Cox, Albert Finney, Laurence Olivier, Maggie Smith, David Duchovny, and Gillian Anderson, among others.
Although there is a lot about acting in part one, the heart of the book for an aspiring or working actor is in part two. What has Davis learned in seventy years of working both in the theatre and in film and television? A lot, as you will see. Davis grasp of the art of acting is vast and practical. And in some ways, original.
In his final chapter, Davis explores the underlying philosophy of acting and actor training and argues for bringing the work in to the twenty-first century.
Praise for On Acting … and life.
This book celebrates a lifetime’s passion and commitment to the mysterious realm of acting. It's not a tale of fame, fortune and gossip, but instead it documents the twists and turns of an artist’s determined engagement with making and sustaining a career in Canada for over sixty years. It’s a history lesson and an inspiration, reminding the discouraged actor that you never know what’s coming round the corner so be prepared and keep the faith. The discussion of what makes for good acting is a wealth of practical, clear advice, mined and honed in decades of devoted exploration as an actor, director, and teacher. Gold!
- Rosemary Dunsmore (Award winning Actor, Director and Acting teacher)
Before he was my cigarette smoking nemesis for over 25 years, before he incarnated one of tv/s great villains, William Davis was an acting teacher. It’s not true that those who can’t do, teach, because Bill can do both. And he can write. Like all good teachers, the wisdom and stories that Bill elaborates upon in his book are really lessons about life. It’s possible you will become a better actor after reading Bill; it’s also possible you will become a better person. For fans of the X-Files or just people who enjoy listening to a no nonsense craftsman and lifer talk about his craft with none of the usual humble-brag or sensational Hollywood bullshit.
- David Duchovny ( Novelist and Star of The X-Files)
Bill Davis’s ‘On acting’ is a fascinating tapestry of a life dedicated not only to the Art, but also to a deeper philosophical grasp of our work. Bill chronicles a highly personal journey that is founded in the search for a truth that truly illuminates the mystery of our craft!
- Brian Cox (Bafta Award Winner and Star of Succession)
Bill’s vast experience, on stage, screen and as a teacher is more than impressive, it’s a rarity in our culture of instant fame. I cast him as a villain 30 years ago, but little did I know he’d always played to win.
- Chris Carter (Creator of The X-Files)
WILLIAM B. DAVIS ADDED TO CAST OF NETFLIX HORROR SERIES: THE MIDNIGHT CLUB
William B. Davis has joined the cast of Netflix’s The Midnight Club, a new horror series from "Midnight Mass", “The Haunting of Bly Manor” and “The Haunting of Hill House” showrunner Mike Flanagan.
The upcoming horror series “The Midnight Club" is based on the Christopher Pike bestseller of the same name, published by Simon and Schuster in 1994.
The 10-episode show is set at a hospice where teenagers with terminal illnesses go to die. The book revolves a group of five young men and women who met at midnight and told stories of intrigue and horror. One night they made a pact that the first of them to die would make every effort to contact the others from beyond the grave.
WILLIAM B. DAVIS IS DAVID CHOAK IN AMAZON'S SCI-FI COMEDY: UPLOAD.
William B. Davis is David Choak, a powerful dead billionaire. Choak has bought himself a better digital afterlife than everyone else. Cynical and smug, Choak feels his wealth proves that he deserves it.
Read full article on Deadline Hollywood.
Created by Greg Daniels, Upload is set in a technologically advanced future where hologram phones, 3D food printers and automated grocery stores are the norm. Most uniquely, humans can choose to be “uploaded” into a virtual afterlife when they find themselves near death.
WILLIAM B. DAVIS in 50 STATES OF FRIGHT produced by SAM RAIMI
Produced by Sam Raimi (Spider Man, Army of Darkness, The Evil Dead) 50 States of Fright invites you on a journey into the dark heart of America. William plays the unseen role of Frank in the upcoming episode Dogwood-Azalea, of the new series on Quibit.
The film AMAZON FALLS with William B. Davis and directed by Katrin Bowen, has just been released on Amazon. Also available on iTunes.
Watch William's interview on Amazon Falls at the Toronto Film Festival:
In January, 2020, in order to keep his acting in fighting trim and to enrich his teaching and directing, William enrolled in a one week intensive workshop in Vancouver with esteemed teacher, Carol Rosenfeldt, from New York’s HB Studios and a selection of leading Vancouver actors. With long time colleague, Douglas Abel, they worked on a challenging scene from Ibsen’s John Gabriel Borkman”.
A great part for William: John Gabriel Borkman, once an illustrious entrepreneur, has been brought low by a prison sentence for fraud. As he paces alone in an upstairs room, bankrupt and disgraced, he is obsessed by dreams of his comeback.
William with Carol Rosenfeld and a stellar group of actors, at Carol Rosenfeld's workshop at Vanarts.
William with Douglas Abel in Ibsen's John Gabriel Borkman
Picture by Ilaria Vecchi
William as John Gabriel Borkman
Picture by Ilaria Vecchi