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Author Topic: A little Cinderella moment
Callipygous
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
Member # 2071

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Icon 1 posted September 22, 2010 05:19      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
This is a story about an old friend of mine. I met her when we both were students at a slightly eccentric drama school, where not having gone to university myself, I received a terrific education, whilst at the same time discovering that my talent was pretty minor, and more importantly that I did not have the hunger for that calling. But I did find a lifelong true friend, one of those people who give you faith in the world. Unlike many actors, she is without vanity, and though she can occasionally be a little prickly, and does not suffer fools gladly, at heart she is generous, kind, with an acute and enquiring mind, great mental strength, and a rocklike integrity. You can probably tell by now that I feel privileged to be her friend, not that I could ever say any of these things to her of course!

She is also a wonderful actress, and has done great work in Mike Leigh's films. Unfortunately like too many of the actresses in his films, she is hugely undervalued. Why this is so I don't know, maybe casting directors think of Mike Leigh's films as an artistic ghetto entirely separate from other work, or perhaps it is because she has a comedy face, but is a dramatic actress. Anyway in the 30 plus years since we left drama school, apart from her work with him, she has only worked intermittently, and then almost always in relatively minor supporting roles. She has a lovely partner, hard working and supportive, though not blessed with material success, so neither of them has ever had more than a few pennies to rub together. She also has no children of her own, so she really has lived for her art, and paid her dues.

Last year Mike Leigh used her again in his new film, which incidentally was not an easy experience. As you might imagine his collaborative, flying blind working methods are pretty scary, and actors are famously insecure at the best of times. Anyway because of some accidents of fate, this time it was more difficult than usual, and by the final wrap, the cast were drained, suffering from nervous exhaustion, and none of them had any inkling whether the film would be any kind of success, or a complete turkey. Even at the first screening for the cast, doubts were privately expressed.

However the film has done well. It was selected for Cannes, where it was well received, and she has just returned from another screening at the Toronto Film Festival. Roger Ebert, whose judgement I generally trust, and whose writing I greatly admire, liked the film a lot at Cannes, and yesterday after Toronto posted some further thoughts, saying he thought it possible the film would attract Oscar nominations, and the aspect most likely to do so was my friend's performance.

Naturally I am just thrilled at this well deserved accolade. Mind you, the last time she received a prize, as "European Young Actress of the Year" from the Berlin Film Festival near the start of her career, she got no work at all for the next two years, so perhaps it would be better if his prediction does not come to pass!

Nonetheless it is a very nice little Cinderella moment for a lovely person.

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

Posts: 2922 | From: Brighton - UK | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
spungo
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
Member # 1089

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Icon 1 posted September 22, 2010 05:31      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Being a fan of Mike Leigh's work, I am now quite curious as to the identity of this lady... although I would never be so vulgar as to guess, mind. [Wink]

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Shameless plug. (Please forgive me.)

Posts: 6529 | From: Noba Scoba | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
spungo
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
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Icon 1 posted May 14, 2011 03:40      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Sorry for the necropost, but I finally saw this film -- decidedly bleak, but very good (and you could tell it was a Mike Leigh film before the opening credits were done). There was a standout performance by one of the women in the cast -- truly superb! :-)

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Shameless plug. (Please forgive me.)

Posts: 6529 | From: Noba Scoba | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
fs

Solid Nitrozanium SuperFan!
Member # 1181

Icon 1 posted May 24, 2011 02:07      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Glad for the necropost Spungo. I missed this too. Gonna keep an eye out for the film now.

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I'm in ur database, makin' moar recordz.

Posts: 1973 | From: The Cat Ship | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged


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