Strange Brouhaha

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Acting Meme

From the 8/8 edition of Musing on Movies:

Are there any actors that you so strongly identify with one particular role that you have trouble accepting them in other roles? What actors do you find the most versatile (i.e. it is easy to accept them in a wide variety of rolls)?

Leonard Nimoy as Spock. DeForest Kelley as Bones. Craig Charles as Dave Lister. The dude who plays Harry Potter, Daniel Radcliffe. James Caan as Jonathan M in "Rollerball"; seriously, every time I see him, a "Jon-a-than! Jon-a-than!" loop starts up in my brain. I assume here of course that when we say role, we really do mean role, as opposed to "playing the same character every time." Someone like, say, Adam Sandler has carved out the "semi-retarded fratboy jackass" niche for himself, and when he's not playing that character, people stay away in droves ("Punch-Drunk Love"). Will Ferrell has specialized in the "I'm yelling really loudly in a whiny voice so I must be funny" school of acting and has played that guy in everything.

I think Paul Giamatti is pretty versatile. I'd accept him on a Kaiser, or maybe a good pumpernickel. Oh wait, you mean role. Okay, I still pick Paul Giamatti. Jack Lemmon. This is actually a really hard question, especially today, because it seems like there aren't a lot of actors who actually take what you'd call a "wide variety" of roles. They're all more or less typecast.


  • dpb: Adam Sandler was really good in Spanglish. But, he wasn't playing frat-boy jackass...

    I absolutely can't stand Jim Carrey, but will admit that he was pretty good in The Truman Show.

    Johnny Depp has taken on some interesting roles--Finding Neverland, Gilbert Grape, to name a couple.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:33 AM  

  • (Fj) Versatile - How about Gene Hackman? Drama, comedy, voice overs. Downhill Racer, The French Connection, Superman, Hoosiers, The Firm, Absolute Power, Birdcage...... Never typecast, always a good performance (well, almost, I guess).

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:41 PM  

  • Bob Denver - he could not be anyone other than Gilligan.

    By Blogger Terry, at 12:53 PM  

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