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Klaus Kinski (1926-1991)

Related: actress - character - men - fiction - stereotype

Characters: Adam - devil - Casanova - Dracula - incubus - Nosferatu - Frankenstein's monster - playboy - satyr

Actors: Paul Bartel - Michel Blanc - Dirk Bogarde - Lon Chaney - Joe Dallesandro - Gérard Depardieu - Bruce Dern - Patrick Dewaere - Clint Eastwood - Harvey Keitel - Klaus Kinski - Bela Lugosi - Marcello Mastroianni - Jack Nicholson - Steve Martin - Sean Penn - Donald Sutherland - James Woods

Patrick Dewaere (1947 - 1982)

Malcolm McDowell, photo unidentified
If - Caligula - Clockwork Orange

Joe Dallesandro, photo credit unidentified


An actor is a person who acts, or plays a role in an artistic production. The term commonly refers to someone working in movies, television, live theatre, or radio, and can occasionally denote a street entertainer. Besides playing dramatic roles, actors may also sing or dance or work only on radio or as a voice artist. A female actor is an actress, although an increasingly large group feel that the term "actor" should be redefined as being gender-neutral and used for both men and women. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Actor [Dec 2004]


Maciste all'inferno (1962) - Riccardo Freda
image sourced here.

Movie stardom and the sexual revolution [...]

Beautiful women and extremely handsome men were rigorously selected to become movie stars and when they were cast in movies with romantic scenes of love, kissing, hugging, and flirting, an entire culture was transformed as it became more acceptable to show feelings of affection in public. The very conservative mood leading up to the twentieth century gave way to a growing erotic milieu as popularized by the movie industry emanating from the studios of places like Hollywood.

Nudity on screen was at first rare. But with the passage of time people became more tolerant of partial nudity for men and the display of female actress's breasts, at first to adult audiences, and later to more general ones. The invention of television made it possible for scenes of love and romance to be broadcast into any home with a "TV". A whole genre of actors who were particularly well-endowed with charisma and “sex appeal" arose. Thus an entire culture arose which was steeped in and eroticized by movie and TV culture, far removed from the more inhibiting times of an "old fashioned" morality rooted in "Bible-thumping" religion.

Famous names in entertainment became not just "stars" but also "goddesses". Beautiful women such as Marilyn Monroe, Raquel Welch, Brigitte Bardot, Jane Fonda, Sophia Loren, Madonna and later young imitators, were explicit in casting a sexual aura about themselves as actresses and to the celebrity-hungry media. A love scene in every movie was accepted as the norm. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_revolution [Oct 2004]

Jennifer and Rutger

Jennifer Jason Leigh plays 'Tralala' in 'Last Exit To Brooklyn', NYC 1989 by Allan Tannenbaum

Jennifer Jason Leigh (born February 5, 1962) is an American actress. Born Jennifer Lee Morrow, she is the daughter of actor Vic Morrow and screenwriter Barbara Turner. The name “Jason” is in honor of family friend Jason Robards.

Leigh took acting classes with Lee Strasberg before she began acting professionally as a teenager. In 1977, she had her first credited role in an episode of the TV show Baretta. Several TV movies-including a portrayal of an anorexic in The Best Little Girl in the World, for which Leigh lost weight to 86 lbs-followed. In 1982, Leigh played a central character in director Amy Heckerling's Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

As an adult, Leigh has gravitated towards portraying fragile, damaged or even psychotic characters. One prominent recent role in this vein was that of an angry punk singer in Georgia (1995).

Her performance as a manipulative stage mother in Childstar won her a Genie Award in 2005. As she was not in attendance at the ceremony, director Don McKellar accepted the award on her behalf. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jennifer_Jason_Leigh [Jun 2005]

The Hitcher is a 1986 Hollywood movie, directed by Robert Harmon, and written by Eric Red. The thriller stars Rutger Hauer, C. Thomas Howell, and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

In addition to scenes shot in the studio, filming locations include Amboy, California, USA, Barstow, California, Death Valley National Park in California, Imperial County, California, and Lake Mead in Nevada. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Hitcher [Jun 2005]

Rutger Hauer (born January 23, 1944, Breukelen, the Netherlands) is an international movie star. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rutger_Hauer [Jun 2005]

Cult Movie Stars (1991) - Danny Peary [...]

Cult Movies Stars - Danny Peary [Amazon.com]

Cult Movie Stars sounds like a publisher's idea for a follow-up to Peary's best known books, but if it isn't in the same league as those, it's certainly worth owning. Peary deals with 750 performers, ranging from major stars like Dietrich, Davis and Bogart, to horror actors, skin-flick starlets and even British comedians (at last an American book which recognises the Sid James phenomenon, even if it does mistakenly say he was in Carry On Nurse). Certainly one can quibble about the selection criteria (De Niro is included but not Pacino; I looked in vain for Mariana Hill; and to bring the book up to date, perhaps the likes of Winona Ryder and Christian Slater should have been present) - but that would be to miss the point. This does not attempt to be a definitive reference book but an appealing dip into the world of cult stars - hence there is no attempt to provide complete filmographies, just a smattering of the stars' most interesting output.

Peary writes: ‘My intention is to get movie fans to seek out particular stars and show why others are so devoted to them.’ His mini-essays succeed at this, communicating a real enthusiasm for cultural icons and obscure exploitation stars alike. His criticism is concise and full of insight - and he has a talent for useful subjective writing. Of Natalie Wood, he writes: ‘It's such a relief when Santa gets her the home she dreams about in Miracle on 34th Street, when James Dean loves her in Rebel Without a Cause ...I just wish someone was there for her in Splendor in the Grass. She was my favourite actress and, like many, I get chills when, in that picture, she almost drowns.’
Darren Slade

[Book that got me started in being interested in offbeat cinema: About movie stars and their films who developed a cult audience. Riveting read. Limited availability.]

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