Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Actors on Actors: SAG Buzz

Have you read the Variety feature where SAG card holders are essentially campaigning for other actors for awards season? Sometimes the admiration is surely talent-based and not about who they're friends with or have worked with and sometimes it's clearly a mixture of the two.

Nicole Kidman, marvelous again in Rabbit Hole.
Marion Cotillard worked with Nicole Kidman on Nine, for example, but her tribute has one very insightful observation. She's talking about how, in the first moments of Rabbit Hole you know nothing about Becca's (Kidman) story but you're instantly drawn in despite her abrasiveness.
"Becca" is so far and yet so close at the same time. The space that is created between her and the audience is simultaneously delicate, strong, violent and full of life. A part of her is gone and will always be gone, yet you feel nothing but life.
Marion & Nic' last year
And when Marion concludes her tribute with...
She is simply one of the world's best actresses.
You have to say "amen." That's too true and a half, whether or not the actresses hit it off on musical soundstages.

Reading all the articles is a pain since Variety takes such measures to hide their content but read we must. Helen Mirren loves the theatricality and imagination of Lesley Manville in Another Year, Alec Baldwin was wowed by the authenticity of the duet in Blue Valentine. And a few actors cite the cast of The Kids Are All Right. Laura Dern calls Mark Ruffalo one of her acting heroes and delivers an astute read on why he's so magical in that very difficult part (which, alas, probably won't look difficult enough to voters less discerning than Dern). Amy Ryan gives props to The Bening, particular in the Joni Mitchell scene (her obvious Oscar clip, yes?) and Colin Firth's ode to Julianne Moore (his co-star last year in A Single Man) is wonderfully expressed. His conclusion gives me hope that The Kids Are All Right will get that "Ensemble" nomination it so richly deserves at the SAG Awards.
All of the actors in this film are on the same formidable level. I kept thinking what a joy it must have been for them to all play off of each other.
Colin & Sally. She moves him.
But my favorite might be Colin Farrell's ode to Sally Hawkins in Made in Dagenham since he admits their offscreen friendship right up front but is clearly bowled over by the talent of the friend in question. Here's the fun intro.
Sometimes I see a film. Sometimes I see a film that moves me. Sometimes I see a film that has a friend in it. Sometimes that friend's name is Sally. When I see a film with a friend in it and that friend's name is Sally, that film moves me.
I can't say that I know the feeling exactly as I have few close friends that I regularly just happen to catch on the silver screen. But I can say that I know the feeling; when I see a film with a stranger in it and that strangers name is Sally, that film moves me.

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Ryan T. said...

And there's also Kate Winslet's recent support for Michelle Williams. Very nice.

OtherRobert said...

James Franco could have tried a little harder to, you know, talk about Mila Kunis in Black Swan. Maybe more than two sentences on that topic could have helped.

john said...

I think there is more to Marion's praise than meets the eye. Some trivia for you, Marion selected John Cameron Mitchell to direct the last part of her dior short films. More interestingly, Marion talked about 'Hedwig' during a Nine interview, found here:

An article from 2007 points out that Mitchell and Marion were planning a french remake of 'Hedwig',:

I would n't at all be suprised if Kidman hired Mitchell to direct Rabbit Hole after Marion talked about him whilst filming Nine, or if Nicole and Marion plan to reteam on something more substantial in the future since there's clearly a lotta love.

Lucky said...

I love it when actors comment on other's performances. It's kinda meta


John -- Hedwig comes up all the time it seems. What a calling card that was for John Cameron Mitchell. It's still one of the best pieces of theater I've ever seen in my life and I see a lot of theater.

Lucky - me too. My secret wish is to here what they think of other actors OFF the record. You know they're people jsut like us so they ahve actors they don't respond to as much as they have actors they adore and respect. We'll never know but i'll be forever curious about which actors don't think much of which other actors ;)

Guy Lodge said...

Interesting that Farrell toasted Sally again -- he did the same two years ago for Happy-Go-Lucky:

I love that they're friends. I so want to hang out with them.

Volvagia said...

I think I know most of your lead actress field:

(After that, it's a toss up between Keener, Hawkins, Jennifer Lawrence, Emma Stone, Julianne Moore and Jolie (you did say she did the best job possible in Salt, right?) Some order of those six has to be your ten, if I've been following you right.)

Your Lead Actor would be:

Jesse Eisenberg
James Franco
Aaron Eckhart (if he is lead, otherwie he's in your support, right.)
Michael Cera for Scott Pilgrim
Colin Firth
(And, if Eckhart's support, it's between Jay Baruchel for The Trotsky, Robert Duvall, Ben Stiller for Greenberg, Robert Downey Jr. and Andrew Garfield (he's co-lead, right?)

Supporting Actress:

Rosamund Pike
Jacki Weaver
Rebecca Hall
Dale Dickey
Ellen Wong

Supporting Actor:

Vincent Cassell
Justin Timberlake
Stanley Tucci
John Hawkes
Brandon Routh

Am I close?

Jorge Rodrigues said...

I think Marion Cotillard is rumored to have been chosen as the co-lead for Kidman's THE DANISH GIRL.

cal roth said...

Kidman and Cotillard weren't supposed to play The Rivals, Berhardnt and Duse?

(How can you not love Cotillard, Nathaniel? It's not wise)


cal -- the heart wants what it wants.

Aaron said...

Nat, did you read The Zellweger's post on Bill Murray? Surprisingly astute and well-written observation of his performance.

Ginger said...

Does anyone know why the only one of these that was published in the magazines was Julia Roberts's comments about Natalie Portman? It was in The Huffington Post, USA Today, Ok Magazine, and everywhere, but I couldn't find anyone else's comments printed. Why? Is it just because she's Julia Roberts? It would have been nice if the media would have recognized what others had to say too.


aaron -- i didn't read that one. Got tired of trying to get around all the Variety blockage.

Ginger -- i assume it's just because she's Julia Roberts. Or maybe that was the first one printed?

caroline said...

It was pretty hilarious to discern the differences between the ones carefully written (Marion Cotillard is endlessly adorable in her genuine sweetness and wide-eyed sincerity. Remember when she thanked Kate Winslet in the 2009 Oscar Best Actress presentation?) and the ones that were practically unconcerned.

What I'd like to know is if the actors volunteered to do the pieces on whoever they wanted, or Variety coordinated the arrangements. James Franco sounded like he was writing it in a hurry per request.

Derreck said...

After Inception and Nine, i found a place in my heart for Marion. Plus, i like how she sometimes struggles with her English, but when she talks, it's almost poetic.

I can't wait to see Rabbit Hole, but Lord knows when that will be. I'm never in the vicinity of 'select theatres' and i don't know when it'll be released wide. It looks like something i'll end up seeing by myself (like Nine was last year) because i can't think of one of my friends who would be interested.

I always feel a little awkward going to a movie by myself, but if it's a movie that i know a companion might not appreciate, it feels better.

and Nat, if you ever pass a copy of Entertainment Weekly, you might have to take a look at the story on "The Return of Nicole Kidman's Face'. ugh.

Bryan said...

I'm always curious to hear what actors think of other actors. I love Marion and Nicole so much!

I'm allowing myself to feel a bit more comfortable with The Kids Are All Right's nomination potential with the SAG. It seems like that kind of film would score really well with actors, you know? And it's reassuring to hear that other actors are talking about the ensemble.