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#1
Old 12-03-2012, 10:03 AM
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Is it "End scene!" or "And......... Scene!"?

It originated as the signal an actor used to tell the casting person that he/she has concluded his audition scene. But this piece of thespian jargon has gone mainstream in the past 20 or so years. In television shows and movies non-actor characters use it to create a comic surprise, as if to say "Haha, fooled ya'! What I just said and did was all just an act!"

But I've always wondered, What exactly are they saying?

The logical wording of the phrase would be "End scene!" (shorthand for: "That is the end of the scene.")

But the phrase is almost always uttered with a gaping pause between the two words. That leads me to wonder if what they are really saying is "And........... Scene!" (shorthand for: "And......[wait for it]....... That's the scene!")

So, which is it?

Thanks all, in advance.
#2
Old 12-03-2012, 10:09 AM
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and scene.
#3
Old 12-03-2012, 10:26 AM
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"And scene," and yes, it means just what you are saying it means. My impression - I don't know if actors really still do this - is that it's used to mark the end of an audition scene, where the performer is alone onstage and it might not otherwise be obvious when the piece is complete.
#4
Old 12-03-2012, 10:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marley23 View Post
I don't know if actors really still do this
Not if they want to get fucking cast. It's horribly amateurish.
#5
Old 12-03-2012, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Inner Stickler View Post
Not if they want to get fucking cast. It's horribly amateurish.
It's come to symbolize an affected hack. Doesn't seem suitable for anything but a comic role.
#6
Old 12-03-2012, 11:06 AM
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How did it start? My guess is that it was once said, maybe yelled, by the stage manager to the lighting guy during a tech run to mark a cue or something. I can't really think why an actor would say it in a non-campy way ever.
#7
Old 12-03-2012, 11:12 AM
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I always thought it began in acting classes, either to mark the end of an improv scene (which otherwise no one would ever know when to end it) or when the teacher/director was instructing a brand new work no one knew anything about, similar to what Marley said.
#8
Old 12-03-2012, 11:13 AM
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I have no idea but I blame it on the hipsters. If your monologue's ending is so diffuse you have to say The End, you have no business showing it to anyone in any situation except for a classroom workshop.
#9
Old 12-03-2012, 11:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner Stickler View Post
Not if they want to get fucking cast. It's horribly amateurish.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner Stickler View Post
I have no idea but I blame it on the hipsters.
The only place I would have ever actually seen it (and I think I saw it but I can't be positive years later) was high school theater. So amateurish, yes; hipsters, no. And you're right that if nobody can tell if the scene is over or not, the actor is doing it wrong.
#10
Old 12-03-2012, 11:35 AM
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Acting 101 students in college love to do it and after they've finished, they wrap a scarf around their black turtleneck, put on a beret and go sit in the cafe with an organic soy chai and talk about which acting texts they're pretending to read. I wish I were joking.
#11
Old 12-03-2012, 11:45 AM
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I can see how it would be helpful in a play reading situation, the stage equivalent to the cinema's "Fade to black."

You're at, for example, a reading for potential show investors. The cast is seated and reads from scripts, but does not perform. Someone (director? stage manager?) reads the stage directions to give the audience a sense of what the action is. To tell the audience that a scene has ended -- here's where the stage lights would go black or the curtain would fall -- he says, "And... scene!"

Perhaps that's where it originated, and it migrated into the audition process.

Anyway, just my theory.

Last edited by stuyguy; 12-03-2012 at 11:46 AM.
#12
Old 12-03-2012, 11:48 AM
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No, they would say Blackout or Curtain.
#13
Old 12-03-2012, 02:58 PM
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I always assumed it came from Directors who wold signal the end of a scene when it wasn't clear when he wanted it to end. For example, lingering on a Christmas dinner table or someone wistfully staring as the train takes her sweetheart away. It tells the actors when they can drop character. For an actor to do it themselves is really dumb.
#14
Old 12-03-2012, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gangster Octopus View Post
I always assumed it came from Directors who wold signal the end of a scene when it wasn't clear when he wanted it to end.
That'd be "cut," wouldn't it?

Here's one cite for "and ... scene." And here is Yahoo Answers getting it as wrong as possible:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Some idiot
It's end. I've scene it in scripts before.
I am trying to convince myself he was being ironic just so I don't give up on humanity for the day.
#15
Old 12-03-2012, 03:05 PM
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I've seen that expression used in quite a few live improv shows, and always thought it was "and scene".

Last edited by EmilyG; 12-03-2012 at 03:05 PM.
#16
Old 12-03-2012, 03:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stuyguy View Post
It originated as the signal an actor used to tell the casting person that he/she has concluded his audition scene. But this piece of thespian jargon has gone mainstream in the past 20 or so years.
It's actually the director who would say this to signal the end of the scene. When an actor is doing it, he is directing himself.
#17
Old 12-03-2012, 03:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marley23 View Post
That'd be "cut," wouldn't it?
i assume "cut" is used whhen they are actually filming. "And...scene" would be used in rehearsals for movies and stage shows.
#18
Old 12-03-2012, 03:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gangster Octopus View Post
I always assumed it came from Directors who wold signal the end of a scene when it wasn't clear when he wanted it to end. For example, lingering on a Christmas dinner table or someone wistfully staring as the train takes her sweetheart away. It tells the actors when they can drop character. For an actor to do it themselves is really dumb.
Maybe. It would be really weird, though for a moment like that to not have a light cue or something going along with it so usually people 'call' the cue rather than noting that the scene has ended. A tableaux is a pretty final pose in and of itself and is usually a big enough clue that the scene itself has ended.
#19
Old 12-03-2012, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner Stickler View Post
Maybe. It would be really weird, though for a moment like that to not have a light cue or something going along with it so usually people 'call' the cue rather than noting that the scene has ended. A tableaux is a pretty final pose in and of itself and is usually a big enough clue that the scene itself has ended.
I don't think it is used primarily in rehearsals, though, where there may be no other cues. And I am not talking about a Tableaux, it could be a scene where folks are just generally acting as they would around a dinner table, chatting, passing things around. Continuing the action until the director feels it has provided the proper end that he wishes to have on the scene.
#20
Old 12-03-2012, 03:29 PM
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I've never heard a director say it. I'm confused about when you think it's used, then if not during rehearsals.
#21
Old 12-03-2012, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner Stickler View Post
I've never heard a director say it. I'm confused about when you think it's used, then if not during rehearsals.
I mis-typed that, I meant to say that it is used primarily during rehearsals.
#22
Old 12-03-2012, 03:31 PM
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Aren't they two different expression? END SCENE in a script, and "And...scene!" in the context the OP is thinking of? Maybe?

Last edited by foolsguinea; 12-03-2012 at 03:32 PM.
#23
Old 12-03-2012, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Gangster Octopus View Post
I mis-typed that, I meant to say that it is used primarily during rehearsals.
Maybe it is somewhere, but it's never been something I heard and I have a hard time imagining a situation where it would be the preferred method of ending a scene.
#24
Old 12-03-2012, 03:36 PM
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There's no reason to type "End scene" in a script. That'd be like typing "End chapter" in a book. I'm not sure if it'd ever be necessary to say "and scene" in a rehearsal. If the actors are trying to find the right beat to end a scene on, they'll experiment until they get it and then the scene will end.
#25
Old 12-03-2012, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner Stickler View Post
Acting 101 students in college love to do it and after they've finished, they wrap a scarf around their black turtleneck, put on a beret and go sit in the cafe with an organic soy chai and talk about which acting texts they're pretending to read. I wish I were joking.
These would be the ones who sit next to the Undiscovered Author, who takes up a whole table with his 3-inch-thick manuscript, which he ostentatiously "edits" page by page but covers up with an elbow when anyone walks by?

I wish I were joking...
#26
Old 12-03-2012, 06:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EmilyG View Post
I've seen that expression used in quite a few live improv shows, and always thought it was "and scene".
This. In team improv competitions, scenes have time limits. When the limit is looming someone gets off a pretty good punch line and the whole team shouts "AAAAANNNND SCENE!" in unison and gesticulates like a rock band timing the last chord of a song. Not so much a pause between words as a long drawn out "and".
#27
Old 12-03-2012, 07:33 PM
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I only ever heard it in acting classes. The students who were performing would reach the end of the dialogue and continue to sit/stand/whatever there in character until the teacher called out "Scene."

The "Aaaaaaand " part is only added when you're doing it to be funny.

It's possible that improv performers call "Scene" today to indicate the end of an improv. But I studied and performed improv back in the 20th century and never heard anyone do that.
#28
Old 12-04-2012, 01:34 AM
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David Cross included "and scene" in a Mr. Show sketch, "The Audition", and later in Arrested Development during his audition for a commercial.

"OH MY GOD! WE'RE HAVING A FIRE sale."
#29
Old 12-04-2012, 03:44 AM
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I have only ever heard it used for comedy, as Inner Stickler says. Why would a director say that? I get the improv situation, but that's still probably somewhat tongue-in-cheek and/or in amateur improv fun.

If a director would have some sort of reason to end a scene (I dunno why that would be, but you never know) he could also just use regular human words, such as "OK". Or something like "OK, then as you're saying that last line you skidaddle...uhm... stage left, you'll get a lighting cue." In film you'd say cut, but in rehearsals for a play you often need more information for the ending of a scene, like where to go, who comes on next, what the lighting will be doing.

"Aaaand....scene" would only be said in rehearsal if everyone were being silly and improvising, turning Chekov into a musical or something, and the director wants a fun way to get back down to business. Maybe.

If someone said that in an audition I would probably wet myself laughing. And then tell them to pick a different career.

If I had to guess it probably comes from pop culture representations of auditions and rehearsals, rather than from actual auditions and rehearsals.

Inner, I think in the name of ignorance fighting we are going to have to have a picture of these beret-wearing, soy-chai-latte-drinking theatre 101 students!
#30
Old 12-04-2012, 08:13 AM
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I recently saw a group of high school students perform improv at a street festival. Their director marked the end of each sketch by saying "And.... scene!"

Last edited by vix; 12-04-2012 at 08:16 AM. Reason: Hit reply too soon
#31
Old 12-04-2012, 08:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pine Fresh Scent View Post
David Cross included "and scene" in a Mr. Show sketch, "The Audition", and later in Arrested Development during his audition for a commercial.

"OH MY GOD! WE'RE HAVING A FIRE sale."
I was going to mention this - they use "and scene" a lot in "Arrested Development".
#32
Old 12-05-2012, 11:31 AM
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Roger the grey alien in American Dad will sometimes say "Aaaand... scene!" when he's feeling particularly Hollywoodish, pretentious, or both.
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