Friday, December 30, 2005
Has Walters really done over 4,000 big-gun interviews? Wow.
I found a bunch to learn from Walters that's applicable to acting. Most notably, her immense preparation and "homework" that she does, re-does, does again, then puts away for the actual interview, and adapts based on what's said (yep, she listens).
Sounds like a good recipe for success.
It's almost sad there's a whole generation that will just know her as "the older one on The View" (she's really good on the The View; she's just more than that).
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
Besides being a legend in the industry, Redford has done a ton for independent and off-mainstream media (largely through the Sundance Film Festival and its offshoots).
Redford told a very visceral story (of which he admits, "I'm not proud of this"), where in his first class acting scene, he became so incensed at his scene partner not listening to him -- even mouthing Redford's own lines in preparation for his own -- that Redford grabbed him and physically threw him across the room.
Visceral, yes, but it was a vivid reminder of what my coaches -- particularly the wonderful Van Brooks -- have been drilling into me: Listen, connect, and genuinely interact with your partners in the scene.
Along those lines, it encouraged me immensely to hear Redford say he "kind of distrusts actors who have their lines memorized." He said he thinks genuine acting comes from improvisation -- but improvisation that doesn't "show" it's being improvised. I find a lot of freedom in knowing my lines cold, but having the directorial lattitude to see where the scene takes us.
Though I was encouraged, but also a little discouraged, because I haven't yet run into many directors with Redford's same mindset (OK, one; but all of my scenes ended up being cut from the final film); and I'm not sure I'll get the chance to act in one of Robert Redford's films in the short term ...
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
I watched Saturday Night Live this last weekend.
I think I'd unofficially sworn of SNL some years ago; it just wasn't doing
it for me anymore.
I watched this weekend because Jack Black was hosting, and the musical
guest was Neil Young -- two of my favorites.
The show was OK in places, and I only really enjoyed Black when he was
singinging (dude is talented and funny).
The other stuff was kinda weak (though the "Chronicles of Narnia" rap did
crack me up).
Neil Young was, of course, amazing.
Friday, December 16, 2005
Survivor: Guatemala on Sunday (Stephenie should have won, and certainly deserved more votes); The Amazing Race: Family Edition (I'm happy the Lenz Siblings took it); and Thursday for The Apprentice (Randal's da man).
Yeah, I know actors aren't supposed to like reality TV, 'cause it's "robbing us of jobs", and ... whatever.
Anyway, now I've got three additional hours a week to devote to, uh, other frivoulous activities ...
Thursday, December 08, 2005
Say what you will about the rest of the cast and portrayals, but for me, the characterization of Lady Tremaine (Wicked Step-Mother) is striking, unsettling, and non-caricatured.
Tremaine was voiced skillfully by Eleanor Audley, who was also Sleeping Beauty's Maleficent.
Rest her soul ...
Saturday, December 03, 2005
The flick not only didn't suck, but was pretty good.
Sure, Charlize Theron just reconfirmed for me that she can do whatever role she darn well pleases, and do it well, but the overall translation of this anime to live action came across very well, and without a lot of obvious CG bolstering.
Sure, some of the things didn't come across well (turns out the whole tongue fixation, though used blessedly little in the film, just isn't "there"; and the series' monologues caused the film to tread dangerously into "show, don't tell" waters).
Theron plays a tough Aeon, and my only criticisms are she's a bit attractive (not angular enough) for the original character, and they softened her a bit -- which makes sense, since they don't have as much time for her character to arc in the film as they did in the series.
Martin Csokas? Surprisingly strong performance, and a good balance for the heart injected into the film.
And Jonny Lee Miller, with a "small but crucial role", was fun to watch -- I'm actually now looking forward to him in The Flying Scotsman.
Liking Aeon Flux might have been helped by my being a fan of the original MTV Aeon Flux animation from Peter Chung, and his technical advisor position on the film is pretty apparent.
My fan-ness doesn't blind me too much, though (remember my spiel about Doom)?
Do check out the movie site, though. In particular, there are some interactive comic books that can be played from more than one perspective, with multiple endings.
Oh, and Graeme Revell does the music. Revell is the Aussiie (or maybe Kiwi) version of Danny Elfman. And both are brilliant.
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Say what you will, but Live has some of the more mature inteviews with big people in the Biz; people from whom I want to learn -- and Alda is one of the best.
I'm grateful for my ReplayTV, which lets me record interviews from various shows/channels/times, and watch them at my leisure (because it's all about me ;-).
Oh, and The Click Five performed. I may have to check these guys out. And I don't know who this generation's Yoko is, but keep her away from these guys ...