Posted by Bob on December 29, 2004
In Reply to: Broke the fourth wall posted by melissa on December 29, 2004
: : : I understand generally what this means, but any more insight into this phrase would be much appreciated.
: : From dictionary.com
: : fourth wall
: : n.
: : The space separating the audience from the action of a theatrical performance, traditionally conceived of as an imaginary wall completing the enclosure of the stage.
: : My guess: when the audience and the actors connect beyond just the level of sight, sound, etc. Play-goers are touched on an emotional level, feel like what they are watching is real.
: : Or something like that.
: oh yes, that fits perfectly to the phrase I read at theonering.net:
: ... and when Viggo broke the "fourth wall" and spoke directly to the viewers and said "Namarie" with that goshdarned perfect pronunciation of his ...
: thanks for helping me understand what the poster meant re viggo mortensen in the Return of the King DVD extras.
It's always when a performer speaks directly to the audience as an audience. (Not, for example, a Shakespearean soliloquoy.) When a character on stage or on screen looks to the audience and says "you see what I'm up against?" or the like, before going back into character, replacing the 4th wall. Many comedies use the joke of a character winking at the audience in this way.