Philip, you are a great director, you taught me how to direct, you were my teacher…you are an actor’s director…you are even tempered and have a great command of the set…you are a joy to work with.


film and television star

Philip Charles MacKenzie is a wonderful actor, director, teacher. I use the word “wonderful” sparingly in regard to teachers and Philip deserves every syllable. He not only knows whereof he speaks, he has a wonderful way of helping the actor discover what he or she needs to understand. His course, “The Actor on Film” is of use to seasoned actors as well as actors preparing to shoot their first film. By focusing on the basic acting issues involved in a given scene, the actor more readily accepts the camera as just another asset to his work.


President, The Actors Center, New York

The reason that Philip Charles MacKenzie’s class, “The Actor on Film” succeeds where so many others fail is that he puts the emphasis firmly on the central element – the acting, not on the standard tricks of on-camera training. A sensitive, rigorous and supportive teacher, Philip understands and helps to elicit that moment of self-revelation in acting that registers so powerfully on both film and television. He brings many decades of experience and a high level of refined taste to his work.


Lloyd Richards Chair of Acting, Yale School of Drama.

Philip Charles MacKenzie has a deep understanding of what it takes to act truthfully and well…he can show actors how to translate a stage process into one for the camera.  In his class actors revisit and retool the basics of good acting as they learn the nuts and bolts of camera technique. For this reason alone, you may want to study with him more than once.


Conservatory Director, American Conservatory Theatre, San Francisco

Dear Philip,

Last week I mentioned I booked a supporting role as an Hispanic Mother in a short film for the 168 Film Project. I shot over the weekend. So, I just had to tell you what happened.

Basically, everything I’ve been learning from you came into play. You said that all the work that’s been done beforehand came through. All the things going on below the surface were showing through.

I did all my work beforehand. I created a back story for the things I needed to fill in the blanks. I worked on the accent and just kept repeating my lines with the accent, as you suggested, so it was organic.

My first scene was shot on Saturday. I had my need for each scene. When I finished the last take, which was my closeup, the director just looked at me, grabbed my hand and said “That was amazing”. The DP came up to me and said “You had so much going on emotionally. I could see it all in your eyes”. You moved me to tears”. Later the director came up to me and said that “I was so professional”. He truly appreciated the fact that I understood about what to do when the closeup is on the other actor.

Then, on Sunday I did my next scene in which I had the most dialogue with my son. I was visiting him in prison and he was being “nasty” toward me. We did a rehearsal and the director said “That’s it”. Then we moved to close-ups.

I didn’t receive any adjustments from the director on any scene. He said I was already there.

So, thank you so much for everything. It all came together for me this weekend. And my concern about being able to bring it right away was washed away.

CLAUDIA D truly are one of the best teachers I’ve ever had.


…thank you very much. I have found everything we learned to be super valuable. While I have been in LA, I have been doing some auditions and all the skills we learned with you have been so useful.


…the time you spent with us has helped me a lot artistically and was one of the best acting experiences I’ve had.


Thank you for all of the precious time you have given us. I say precious because each moment you spent with us, you gave us you, the real you. I never felt that you were holding back with us. You truly cared about our work and about us as people and that showed through each and every time. I am extremely grateful for your mentoring and guidance, for taking us seriously as actors, and for never doubting us even when we doubted ourselves. It has truly been an honor to have you with us, to work with us, and to watch you work. I feel I have learned so much, not only from performing for you, but through watching your direction while others were performing. I say in all honesty that this class has been one of the great memories I will take with me.