Right, so last week I had the choice between writing a blog about upcoming films and actors. Of course I wrote about up coming films so that leads nicely onto this week discussing actors. Now I have kept the vagueness about this blog concealed to get your mind ticking away. So without further ado; actors. What I mean by actors is more breaking of typecast; actors who completely change their type of role and surprisingly pull this off.
There are some actors who can pull off a variety of acting, however others where it is doubtful. It seems obvious to state this but some people just can’t act certain styles. Just look at Steve Carrell. I cannot imagine him doing anything other than comedy, more so immature (albeit often very funny) comedy. This however could well change, but at this current point in time it doesn’t. I say this because Jim Carrey surprised I think everyone when he came out with a performance in ‘Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind’. Carrey is of of course one of the quintessential comedy actors, being able to master slap stick and outright bizarre comedy well. Look at his performance in ‘Ace Ventura’ or ‘Dumber & Dumber’ to see this. He did certainly show a range to his acting with ‘The Cable Guy’, being less slapstick and more dark humour based, and once again in ‘Man On The Moon’, showing some depth in the biopic of comedian Andy Kaufman. But when ‘Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind’ came out; I don’t think anyone was prepared. There was no ‘comedy’ acting what so ever. I say it like this simply because moments of ‘Eternal Sunshine…’ were funny, but not because of a joke or gag, more because of the scenario or quirkiness. Carrey produced a moving performance far beyond what anybody thought was possible of him. He has of course kept up with playing roles outside of his famed slapstick comedy with films such as ‘The Number 23′ and the currently in production ‘Kick-Ass 2′. It was due to his casting in ‘Kick-Ass 2′ that I decided to write this blog. Now this franchise certainly does have its humorous moments to it, but it’s not slapstick in any way. It does show Nicholas Cage in a more comedy based role though, different to his villainous or hero roles. This relation of Cage and Carrey does bring to mind the original desired casting for ‘Dumb & Dumber’; instead of Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, the Farrelly Brothers wanted Nicholas Cage and Gary Oldman. I can’t help but feel that that would have been a completely film all together.
There were a few other actors who also brought this blog about; to some extent Hugh Grant but more notable Shia LaBeouf. Grant is known for his charming charismatic and often bumbling roles in ‘Four Weddings & A Funeral’, Notting Hill’ and ‘Love Actually’. However he does have some serious roles under his belt, namely in the erotic puzzle ‘Sirens’. What brings Grant to mind though is his role in the upcoming ‘Cloud Atlas’. In a recent interview Grant explains that he plays a cannibal at one point in the film, something which is a complete break of his typecast and a reason why he took on the role. LaBeouf has a far larger contribution to this blog though.
Starting out in Disney’s ‘Even Stevens’, LaBeouf showed that he could play the hyperactive bumbling teenager well, this lead to the progression in ‘Transformers’. He has since obviously made more box office hits such as ‘Indiana Jones’, ‘Eagle Eye’ and ‘Disturbia’. Most film fans discredit LaBeouf because he has only ever done major studio films, therefore it may have come as a shock to some that he has stated that he will no longer do big studio films and instead focus on indie film. This can be seen in his role in the recently released ‘Lawless’ and his acceptance of a role in the new Lars Von Trier film ‘Nymphomaniac’ where un-simulated sex scenes will be present. This change in direction was of no surprise to me however, simply because of a role I had seen LaBeouf play outside of his hit action films and Disney TV show. LaBeouf starred in a Sundance Institute film ‘A Guide To Recognising Your Saints’, a biopic film following a teenagers struggle to leave New York before it kills him and his subsequent return to see his father 15 years later. LaBeouf produces a truly amazing performance far different any which he had given. Due to this I see no problem in seeing LaBeouf play more indie based roles, and worst comes to worst, he pulls off the studio films fairly well so if he’s not throwing his weight in independent cinema he could go back to the studios (I realise this sounds like I don’t have confidence in LaBeouf, but I do). ‘A Guide To Recognising..’ also features Channing Tatum giving an outstanding performance, again far different from his action and soppy chick flick roles.
So I think I’ll end it there. This has been a bit sporadic, mainly because I had to try and remember everything I was going to write last week. But either way I think my point comes across (if I was trying to make a point in the first place). So don’t judge a book by its cover, or at least an actor by their previous performances (unless they truly are shit), because every once in a while you might be surprised.