How to Make Yourself Cry in a Film

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One of the biggest mysteries in the world of entertainment is how actors make themselves cry. It seems so difficult to cry on cue, and so actors in training strive to learn this skill. There are several different techniques, however, to accomplish this goal. I will go over a few of them.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging


  1. 1

    Learn about emotional memory. Most acting schools spend plenty of time on this area of acting, which involves putting yourself in a past situation that made you sad, like a family death or being dumped.

  2. 2

    Try sense memory, which is like emotional memory, but focused more on objects triggering responses than emotions. For instance, if a woman left you at the altar, a wedding ring might trigger sadness.

  3. 3

    Another interesting trick is to place onions nearby. The odor causes tears. They won't make you cry, but skilled actors can fake the effects of crying, which looks real with tears.

  4. 4

    One way others have recommended (that I find helps more with stopping inappropriate laughter) is to bite your tongue. The shock might catalyze some tears.

  5. 5

    Glycerine is another popular method in the TV and movie worlds, since its consistency and appearance are almost identical to tears. Because of this, they fall right out and can simulate real crying with acting skills.

  6. 6

    Along similar lines, saline solution (for contact lenses) generates the same response.

  7. 7

    Some movies use "blowers," which are wind-based devices that actually create real tears.

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