Actors Versus Models

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Keanu Reeves is a bad actor and we all know it. I know, it’s not really news, but I needed a good reference point, because the same can be said of most of Hollywood.

And over the years I’ve found I have come to prefer those with less experience over the big named actors, because they are not yet set in their ways, and tend to feel out more of their roles than the seasoned actors do.

After a while it just becomes routine — and it should NEVER be routine. Each role is a new life, a new backstory, a new set of experiences. But we, the audience fall in love with characters the same way we fall in love with our partners. And we look for our old lovers in the faces of our new ones, and secretly hold the same expectations.

“You don’t love me — you love her!”
“My God, we could be twins!”
“I am not going to become her just so that you can play out your sick, perverted fantasy!”

You don’t love Jennifer Aniston, you love the girl you grew up with in Friends. You don’t love Sweeney Todd, you love that tragic boy you had a crush on in Edward Scissorhands. You don’t love Matt Damon, you love that rogue agent, Jason Bourne. You don’t love Ashton Kutcher, you love  that precious dork, Kelso, from That 70’s Show. Al Pacino isn’t Tony Montana, but you always want him to be.

So yes, it’s come to the point where so many of us have come to expect them to play the same part over and over again; and they often oblige. Ultimately, they are still just members of the Entertainment Industry, and whatever entertains us makes them money. So why wouldn’t they go along with it? It’s good business sense when you come down to it. But it’s not art.

Art is living. Art is evolving. Art is a river, not a pond. Art is always asking the questions of how and why? Yet never satisfied with the answer. So up to a point, all the big named actors are artists. But only to the point just before their product becomes a formula. Everything after that is merely modeling.

So I choose art. How about you?

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One response »

  1. Yes. In “The Decay of Lying: An Observation”, Oscar Wilde “holds that art sets the aesthetic principles by which people perceive life” [Wikipedia: Life Imitating Art]. I prefer to think of myself as an author/director writing/scripting chapters in one’s life in ink and with a soundtrack.

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