Tuesday, March 10, 2009


as danny and i were leaving the sag/wgae theater on west 57th street the other day, we passed by a gossip girl shoot on west 57th street right in front of the russian tea room. lots of cameras and lights and stuff. and then there were a TON of paparazzi on the edge of it all, leaning in and angling here and there, taking pictures. i thought, oh wow -- this is the reason why i always keep my camera in my purse! and i thought about pulling it out. but then i got a glimpse of these two -- zac efron and the other white girl that everyone is always going on about that's usually paired with him -- and i was genuinely surprised at how pretty he was.

i mean really, really pretty. like, michael york pretty, when he was in the three musketeers. no. more like, rob lowe pretty, when he was in his early twenties. okay -- nobody's that pretty. that was otherworldly. he looked like a chick pretending to be a dude. then again there was christopher walken, when he was in the deer hunter. and maybe al pacino when he was in the panic in needle park -- a movie that shall now and forever remain in my all time favorite top five. he had quite a few beautiful moments in that film.

yeah, zac was really pretty and really uninteresting. no presence, no heat. and the girl with him -- what is her name? eh, i can't remember. --gave off NO sparks at all. i don't know what i was expecting but i'm fairly certain that it was way more than zip.

danny and i had just seen a preview of the latest julia roberts vehicle duplicity, co-starring clive owen. and no, it wasn't that good. it was i'm-stuck-on-this-plane-and-i-can't-sleep-so-i-guess-i'll-watch-this good. but before the movie started, we had a really interesting talk about her and film stars who insist on doing broadway and why they probably shouldn't. his acting teacher (who passed away recently) coached ms. roberts through her broadway debut and had really interesting remarks about her acting talent.

he said that the camera really loved her and that usually in film, that's 90% of the battle. a good director can get you through the rest. it's their medium, anyway. he also said that she was in way over her head with the broadway play and didn't understand why she was insisting on doing it. she's used to a 20 million dollar paycheck, so it definitely wasn't the money.

once upon a time, the hollywood movie studios brought you to the west coast to star in the broadway show you just did in new york city. and then they kept you under contract in their little circle, put you up in a cute little bungalow and groomed you -- with acting lessons, stylists, photographers, make-up artists, you name it. eventually, they farmed you out to other studios, built up your resume, your reputation. and then poof, you were a star.

there are moments where you see that kind of thing happening nowadays -- john leguizamo comes to mind and so does sara ramirez -- but it's not the flow of things. nowadays, you can finesse your way through it if you're pretty enough. even if you're a guy. especially if you're a guy.

maybe i should have taken a picture, anyway.

1 comment:

AJ Muhammad said...

What are you saying about my John Leguizamo and Sara Ramirez? Are you saying that they are in invention of the Hollywood studios or comparing them to someone like Zac Efron? If so, I have to say no way because John Leguizamo paid his dues doing theater and then his one man shows off B'way before he segued way into playing a whole bunch of stereotypical latino characters on film before he was able to play more dimensional roles all the while coming back to B'way to do his solo shows. And Sara Ramirez paid her dues too doing musical theater (flops for which I ushered back in the day when I was trying to make a dollar out of 10 cents) before she got her Tony for Spamalot and then was lucky enough to book Grey's. I believe that both Sara and John are talented and they are still hustling. Zac Efron on the other hand, that's another story. He creeps me out with his jujed up hair and eyebrows. He really looks like he was cooked up in some Hollywood lab.