A specific form of BreakingTheFourthWall accomplished merely by [[IKnowYoureWatchingMe looking directly at the camera]]. Usually done by accident, by amateur actors who happen to notice a camera is pointed at them. The trouble here is that the editor didn't catch it, allowing the character to make eye contact with the audience. Typically a film or live TV trope, especially in dramas.

''Intentional'' occurrences fall under AsideGlance or FourthWallObserver.

Contrast with NoFourthWall (thus including documentaries and reality TV), where the cast is aware of the audience, which—in turn—is aware of the production crew.



* ''Film/HotFuzz'': Creator/TimothyDalton looks into the camera for a second in a bar scene. Instead of using a different take, the director actually put a cash register ring on it, to draw ''even more'' attention to it.
* In the opening scene of ''Film/ANightAtTheOpera'' there's a woman in the background who is framed precisely in the center between between Sig Ruman and Magret Dumont, who stares into the camera the entire time.
* In ''Film/LoveActually'', Creator/KieraKnightly's character looks at the camera as the boat she's on is pulling out of the dock. Of course, it's a film taken by an in-story amateur on her wedding day, so the slip is more forgiveable. The director commented on it, because the character filming is in love with Keira, and so by looking at the camera, it's like she's looking straight at him.
* Averted in ''Film/PansLabyrinth''. It is pointed out in the DVD commentary, where one of the actors looked at the camera as he was exiting the scene, that they covered it up by digitally replacing his head in the relevant frames with his head from the last frame before he looked. It's all over in less than a second, so you don't notice it unless it's pointed out.
* In ''Film/SurfsUp'', Nani brings an injured Cody to his uncle the Geek [[spoiler:, really Big Z in hiding]], who is shocked at seeing the documentary crew following them, staring at the camera with suspicion and indignation.
* Happens a few times in ''Film/DazedAndConfused'', a consequence of using some very fresh actors and random locals as extras.
* An in-universe version occurs in ''Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger'', as a film director specifically tells Steve not to look at the camera during filming of a Captain America propaganda film.
* In the 1956 ''Film/TheTenCommandments'', Sephorah warns Moses of an intruder nearby; Moses tells Sephorah "Your eyes are sharp as they are beautiful". Yvonne De Carlo responds by staring straight into the camera, ''away'' from where she's just said the danger was.
* Obi-Wan appears to do this in ''Film/StarWars'' just after scaring the Tusken Raiders off and ensuring that Luke is alive. He turns to the camera, doffs his hood and says "Hello there!" The very next shot shows that we have been looking through R2-D2's eyes.
* Frank-n-Furter of ''Film/TheRockyHorrorPictureShow'' does this in his "I Am" song, establishing his showy over-the-top personality (and the movie's campiness) by looking directly at the camera and throwing a glass of water at the lens.

[[folder:Live-action TV]]
* Parodied in a ''Series/GreenAcres'' episode where a documentarian comes to Hooterville to shoot a film. Mr. Haney opens up a film acting class and the first thing he teaches is to not look at the camera. The others interpret this as covering their eyes or turning their back to the camera.
** This is one of the funniest scenes in this series. Actually Mr. Haney has built a fake camera with a tomato can as the lens. His instructions are actually, don't look at the tomato can. Lisa makes this even funnier when she gives the same instructions with her Hungarian accent. The reason Mr. Haney is giving these lessons is because a film team is coming to film a documentary about Hootersville. When they get there, no one will look at them.
* Thanks to retakes being too expensive for much of its NoBudget history, this happens fairly often in Classic ''Series/DoctorWho''.
** Creator/TomBaker was particularly prone to this, to the point where it's a bad-acting habit associated with him in the same way that Creator/WilliamHartnell is associated with line flubbing (though not to the same extent) - and since he has very unusual and piercing eyes it can suck you right out of a scene. See the scene at the start of Episode 2 of "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS13E2PlanetOfEvil Planet of Evil]]" where, in a scene focused on Sarah talking, Baker accidentally makes eye contact with the camera and breaks it off as soon as he realises what he's doing. A particularly painful example is when Tom Baker makes clear accidental eye contact with the camera in "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS14E3TheDeadlyAssassin The Deadly Assassin]]" during a sequence where the camera is doing a [[BinocularShot shot from the POV of a sniper scope]], making it seem like the Doctor has spotted the sniper and ''completely'' changing the intended interpretation of the scene. Of course, later on, sometimes it's intentional AsideGlance - a Fourth Doctor quirk that may have developed out of Baker's bad habit.
** Soldeed in "[[Recap/DoctorWhoS17E5TheHornsOfNimon The Horns of Nimon]]" accidentally makes eye contact with the camera while overacting his way through the script in one scene. Likely an artifact of the serial's [[BottleEpisode cheap production]] and a side effect of HamAndCheese.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. In "[[{{Recap/BuffyTheVampireSlayerS5E12Checkpoint}} Checkpoint]]" a VictimOfTheWeek who's {{Mind Rape}}d does this, but as he's rambling "I know you're always looking at me" at the time it's likely a LeaningOnTheFourthWall gag.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyV'', Krile's battle sprite has her eyes permanently fixed on the camera as opposed to facing the monsters like the rest of the party. Given that Krile is FriendToAllLivingThings with supernatural sensitivity, it might be that she's aware of the player.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'': Whether done intentionally or as the result of an animation error, a shot at the end of "Bridle Gossip" shows Pinkie Pie [[https://derpibooru.org/596339 staring at the camera]]. Naturally, this resulted in common {{Fanon}} that Pinkie is a FourthWallObserver.

[[folder:Real life]]
* British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn is known for doing this a lot during his television appearances, prompting Website/{{Twitter}} comparisons to Creator/TomBaker's [[Series/DoctorWho Doctor]] (above) - or, more sinisterly, Francis Urquhart's {{Aside Glance}}s from ''Series/HouseOfCards''.