2.15.2005

Oh, and also

I can be thrown out of the Writers Guild if I rise completely to the defense of actors, but I take issue with Kevin Drum when he says:

"Here's my uninformed guess: actors are lazy. My evidence for this is the annual Academy Awards ceremony. Every year I watch slack jawed as the famous actors who have been chosen as presenters walk onto the stage, squint discernibly at the TelePrompter, and recite their five or six lines about as well as an average fourth grader. Are they really so lazy and arrogant that they can't be bothered to rehearse their lines for 20 minutes in order to produce a good reading?"

While I wouldn't entirely rule that out, my guess is that those actors are nervous. Some actors hate being on stage when they're not a character -- hate being on Letterman, etc. That's why they like acting! Others are very good at it (you don't see the former comedians screwing up their lines, for example), but not everyone, especially when there's a billion people watching and no one to protect them.

I don't much care about the Emmys either, but I think you see less of this lame fumfering; if so (and it's just a bullshit theory), it would be because TV stars, for all their wealth'n'fame, have essentially bourgeois responsiblities -- the same office, the same crew, year after year -- and so spend much less of their time in bubble wrap than their movie colleagues. Which is also why they're dying to be movie stars.

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