are in! These five films will be populated by companies of seven actors
from the 25 participants and the list is already getting quite
A comedy. Beer Battered Bedmates
A horror flick. The Warehouse
An action flick. Forty Second Fuse
A science fiction flick. Beyond Pluto
This is the third round of choices, followed by the comments by the drafter:
#1 Kurt Russell
While Kurt may not be considered the best actor of this generation, he
has more than cemented his place as a “star,” and possesses that
elusive quality that makes one compelling and watchable on screen. Best
of all, though, he has proven throughout his career that he can handle
any type of genre without breaking a sweat (unless the role requires
him to), and he can make nearly any movie that much better with his
mere presence. A look at the guy’s impressive career should be proof
enough of his versatility. His early genre work with John Carpenter (The Thing, Escape From New York, Big Trouble in Little China) as well as lesser films like Stargate and Soldier show that he can more than handle horror and sci-fi, while his appearances in great comedies like Used Cars (and dumb ones like Captain Ron and Overboard) show that he has a great sense of humor, as well as a knack for expert comic timing. Meanwhile, big budget pulpy stuff like Tombstone and Sky High
show that Kurt can work well with an ensemble, establishing a strong
presence while letting others share the spotlight. Need an action hero?
There are few who can do that as well as Kurt Russell, as movies like Tango & Cash, Breakdown, and Backdraft prove. Yet he is still capable of bringing the drama in films like Miracle and Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story.
He may not be on the level of Daniel Day Lewis or Robert De Niro, but
there’s a reason Kurt Russell has lasted as long as he has in the
business. He’s got “it,” and at the end of the day, that’s all he needs. – Chris Olson
#2 Leonardo DiCaprio
DiCaprio was in Blood Diamond, my favorite movie. That last sentence was a joke. But he was in The Man in the Iron Mask,
which is my favorite movie. The thing about DiCaprio is that he’s
sought after. People want him to topline flicks. He brings in the
herds. He dates models. He works with amazing directors. He used to be
on Growing Pains…so there is a remote possibility that he’s
friends with the born again Kirk Cameron. Plus, he loves the
environment, even though it’s on such borrowed time. I don’t know –
when you add it all up, that’s just a powerhouse to have aboard the old
repertory company. Is he kind of bland? I mean, kinda. But he was great
in The Departed, so I can’t really complain. I just wish The Beach
had turned out a little better, ya know? Anyway, you are probably
wondering how I managed to convince an international superstar to join
my acting team. I gave him a bag of Doritos signed by Morris Day.
DiCaprio’s a sucker for old timey rock memorabilia. That you can eat. – Justin Waddell
#3 Michelle Monaghan
Michelle is just what we need at B&M, a strong, beautiful leading
lady who can work in any genre. I think it’s enough to point out that
the chemistry she helped catalyze between herself and Robert Downey,
Tom Cruise and then Casey Affleck, in three completely different roles
working against three completely different actors, was palpable. The
woman can act and beyond that she’s got the intangibles (read:
charisma). – JuddL
#4 Simon Pegg
Simon Pegg was always on my list, but when I drafted him in the third
round I thought maybe I was stretching. I figured he wouldn’t last
until my pick at the bottom of round four, but I wasn’t sure it was
worth sacrificing other, potentially stronger picks in favor of him.
Fortunately, my stupidity faded and I realized how lucky I was to be
able to add him to my group.
Simon Pegg is funny, and for a lot of actors that’s both a blessing and
a curse. Once you make people laugh it seems you have a difficult time
convincing them you can do anything else. But why anyone would doubt
Pegg’s abilities as an actor is a mystery to me. Sure, he’s funny, but
there’s a well-developed emotional center to each of his characters
that elevates his performances above
the level of “just comedy.” His characters are real, and that’s why they’re memorable; that they make us laugh is secondary.
One day, more people will realize how talented Mr. Pegg is; in the
meantime, I’m happy to draft him in any round. I can’t imagine any
challenges that this project would present for him. All of his work has
revealed, at its center, an intelligent and thoughtful actor. Hot Fuzz showed us that he can hold his own in an action film, he proved capable enough when shit got real in Shaun
of the Dead, and his work in Spaced
is brilliant and nuanced. He works well with a wide range of other
actors, he’s got a great presence, and he’s perfect for my company.
Cheers, Mr. Pegg; welcome aboard. - Mr. Mushnik
#5 Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is part of a group of young actors whose acting
ability certainly rivals that of older more estabilished actors; giving
the impression that if he continues to even maintain the quality of
work seen on the screen over the past few years. That we are certain to
encounter some extremly great work in the future.
Much like any former child actor, Levitt began doing commercials and other kid-related stuff, most noteably Angels in the Outfield and guest spots on tv shows. He then landed a supporting spot on Third Rock from the Sun playing essentially a comic version of Homer from Near Dark
(Old man trapped in young kid’s body) and while it’s a silly sitcom,
you certainly got the feeling he and John Lithgow were working together
pretty well (French Stewart, not so much) but while it was typical
sitcom antics. You could see something there, but only if it was
realized and not wasted in typical teen actor fashion. (drugs, bad
career decisions, etc.)
Then a few years later, three movies really showed the guy’s talent. First, being a hustler in Mysterious Skin, a teen detective in the noir-homaged, Cowboy Bebop framed Brick, and an brain injured former jock in The Lookout.
In all three films, you have diversified lead roles in which he is not
gotten into the typicall teen movie garbage that other young actors get
into and pretty much snuff out their careers. - EdHocken
#6 Alan Rickman
Nothing provided yet. – Scott Christy
#7 Denzel Washington
You want to talk about an overwhelming presence? This guy is as magnetic as an actor can get, something one might fear when cobbling a repertory company together but from his work on televsion to films like Crimson Tide, he’s proven he can share the spotlight. Plus, he’s versatile. Amazingly so, even though there’s a nice dose of ‘Denzel’ in there as well. Alongside Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon, Denzel Washington makes the Krakenheads a Crackerjack troupe. – Nick Nunziata
#8 Gwyneth Paltrow
Paltrow has a quality I call “attainable hotness”. She’s got the looks,
but not in a way that makes you think “Oh, I have absolutely no shot at
that.” She has an approachable beauty that let’s you in.
But the main reason she’s joining the Bar None Rep is her versatility.
From Seven to Shakespeare in Love to The Talented Mr. Ripley to The
Royal Tennenbaums, she’s demonstrated the ability to do pretty much
anything, and do it well. She even manages to hold her own against the
force of nature that is Robert Downey Jr. in Iron Man, showing an easy
chemistry with him that really makes you believe Tony Stark would give
her a second glance. And her head looks great in a box.
We plan on keeping her head attached to her neck, though, as she joins the casts of these films:
Aqueduct of Tears: As the rebellious Queen Boudica, Paltrow
finds herself at odds both with the Roman aqueduct encroaching on her
people’s land and the Roman legion assigned to protect it.
Beer-Battered Bedmates: Here, Paltrow is Julie Cavanaugh, a corn
dog vendor whose secret romance with Bana’s Tony Romero threatens to
fan the food/games rivalry into all-out war at the Oklahoma State Fair.
The Warehouse: Paltrow joins Hoffman and Bana as Cecily Manchester, whose simple trip to pick up a package turns into a night of terror.
Forty-Second Fuse: Paltrow teams up with Bana again as Felicity
Hawkins, a hellcat on horseback who doesn’t see why a woman can’t lead
Bana’s gang of outlaws.
Beyond Pluto: Finally, Paltrow plays Regina Alston, the
government liason who may know more than she reveals about Pioneer 10’s
sudden and unexplained reappearance.
We’re certain Paltrow will more than hold her own in our company, and eagerly welcome her aboard! - Richard Dickson
#9 Casey Affleck
After spending his entire career in the shadow of his older brother
Ben, Casey Affleck made 2007 the year that he shed the “little brother”
label and let the industry and the world know that he’s his own man. In
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, he
played said killer (opposite fellow Triumph Repertory Company member
Brad Pitt), earning universal acclaim. The first in the family to
garner an Academy Award nomination for work done in front of the
camera, Casey stood out amongst the very talented ensemble and brought
an incredible amount of depth and heart to the infamous murderer.
Older brother Ben knew that Casey had the ability to be the lead in a
studio picture and was his first choice for the role of Patrick Kenzie,
the private detective hired to help the police find a missing little
girl in the South side of Boston, in Gone Baby Gone.
Casey Affleck stood toe-to-toe with such luminaries as Ed Harris and
Morgan Freeman and held his own. He showed he belongs in the big
leagues with those actors, that he’s not “the other Affleck”.
Hell, in the Oceans films, his banter and shenanigans with
Scott Caan have been as entertaining or more than the activities of the
A-listers Clooney, Pitt and Damon.
I have held off on assigning roles for the 5 films, but the acquiring
of Casey Affleck has sped up the process a little bit. He will be
playing a journalist for a Midwestern newspaper in Aqueduct of Tears who goes up against Brad Pitt’s evil US Senator in a tale of murder, deceit, blackmail, arson and an NFL franchise.
The Triump Repertory Company couldn’t be prouder to welcome Casey Affleck into the fold. - Will Kane
#10 Ciaran Hinds
If you go to Wikipedia and search for the definition of “Secret Weapon”
you get a picture of Ciaran Hinds. He is there to hold things together.
He automatically fills the screen with an emotional weight and gravitas
that serves as the anchor of every ensemble cast. Hinds was never
destined to headline movies, it was too easy for him to be a superstar.
He knew he could better serve the world and the starving children of
the world by elevating every material and scene he’s in. This is
specially evident in gems like Munich and There Will Be Blood.
Where he’s Daniel Plainview’s right hand man and closest thing to a
friend. He’s the ultimate dad, the ultimate Sr. Officer, the ultimate
Bad Guy, the ultimate experienced partner and just about everything you
want him to be.
Working Gods is damn proud to have him join our team in the following productions.
In Aqueduct of Tears he will be playing the father of
Maria Bello, a old man filled with joy because of his daughter’s
wedding. The surprising arrival of Chiwetel Ejiofor’s character will
reveal some ugly skeletons in his closet and change the family dynamics
Beer Battered Bedmates will have him play the owner of a
recreational facility in where a bachelor party is being held. He”ll
get more than he bargained for!
Mr. Hinds will get to ham it up playing evil Nazi scientist Dr.
Friedkin who has been experimenting with human resurrection in order to
create the ultimate undead super soldier in the classic horror flick The Warehouse.
Having led the bomb squad for almost 30 years, Captain McClane will
have to face his biggest threat yet, his former apprentice turns the
table around using all his knowledge to terrorize the city of Las Vegas
in the action packed flick 40 Second Fuse.
Finally in the sci-fi drama Beyond Pluto
he’ll be playing the head medical officer Dr.Sisko. The expedition will
test his abilities once a series of events jeopardize the entire crew. – Tati
#11 Christina Ricci
’bout time to get a lady in here! I chose Ms. Ricci because of her
versatility and ability to balance being cute, strong, sexy, and
mysterious. She’s managed to play trash (Black Snake Moan) and innocence (Speed Racer) with equal believability, and I expect very great things from her in the future.
I chose her because, again, I’m looking for a group that can really bounce off of each other. Ricci plays well by herself (Prozac Nation)
but is a strong addition to any cast. She plays every part, no matter
the size, with grace and understanding of what she’s doing. I see her
exploring interesting dynamics with both Hanks and Goodman. She has
crossed genres, so she’ll be up to that task as well. It also does not
hurt that she’s very very attractive. - Renn Brown
#12 Keith David
Again, versatility is key. Keith is another great actor that has worked
in various genres. He has a strong and commanding presence and a
beautiful voice. Any voice over work will be cover quite nicely. Anyone
who was in The Thing is a welcome addition to the troupe. – jay f
#13 Paul Rudd
Was Paul Rudd a response to everyone who thought Day-Lewis wasn’t
versatile enough — specifically, funny enough — to be in a company
like this? Perhaps. But with all due respect to Depp, I like thinking
of Rudd and Day-Lewis as two people who do similar work, in some vague
way. Whether it’s Rudd’s ability to find gold in a half-hour of riffing
on-set or Day-Lewis’ ability to bury himself into the history of his
character and script, I finally see some ideas starting to take shape
in my company. While Depp is the versatile, “do it all” actor in the
group, I can see Rudd bringing out Day-Lewis’ strength in Beer Battered
Buddies while Day-Lewis pushes Rudd in Aqueduct of Tears.
If it doesn’t work out … well, he’s still a funny motherfucker, right? – flyarz
#14 Amy Adams
When choosing my main actress, I need someone who can match up well
with my leading man (LeBeouf), while still being someone that would
attract the eye of my antagonist (Cruise), whether it is as a romantic
rival, a horror victim, or just window dressing when the hero is racing
around trying to save the day. She has also proven to be a great comic
actress and can sing if I need her to. Plus, look at her. She’s
freaking mega-cute. – Starving Dog
#15 Clare Danes
Nothing provided yet. - Eric Cordo
#16 Russell Crowe
There aren’t many actors who will get my dollar opening day, regardless
of what they do. Russell Crowe is one of them, and while I
love/admire/worship at the altar Mary-Louise Parker and Ed Harris in
ways that explain why I will die alone, Crowe is probably my favorite
actor working today.
Crowe is a leading man without a doubt, and he’s one of the few actors
working today who is an Alpha Male (meaning I believe it when he kicks
some ass), but he is also an actor with an extreme dedication to his
craft. I’ve told this story a dozen times on CHUD already, but I had
the opportunity to meet Jeffrey Wigand, who Crowe played in The Insider,
in high school as part of an interview for the school paper. During our
interview, there were times where if you closed your eyes, you couldn’t
tell whether it was the real guy or Crowe as Wigand. Mimicry is easy
for an actor, but it was Wigand’s comments about how Crowe accurately
captured what he was going through emotionally during the real-life
events of the film that stuck with me.
I don’t know if it’s Wigand or Maximus from Gladiator that
is the proto-typical Russell Crowe performance, but both of them reveal
Crowe’s fondness for the underdog. The schlub. The working man. In
nearly all of his movies, he plays an average guy up against seemingly
unbeatable odds. We don’t think of him that way because he’s Russell
Crowe the Phone Thrower, but it’s true. (It’s rumored that the
producers of Homeless Dad wanted Crowe before he passed on the part.)
He doesn’t play guys who set out to be heroes, but who rise to the
situation to become heroic, whether it’s the brawny physicality of
Maximus, the doggedness of Richie Roberts, the intellectual superiority
of John Nash, or a combination in Captain Jack Aubrey.
There’s been some question as to whether or not Crowe can do funny. I
think Crowe is a funny guy, but not funny ha-ha. He’s more playful than
anything, especially when it comes to the understanding that he’s
dealing with ridiculous material. His first two movies in Hollywood
were The Quick and the Dead and Virtuosity, and I think he has an inherent understanding of the concepts behind those two films. He gets them, just like he gets that 3:10 to Yuma
is a throwback western, an R-rated Silverado, and that it’s time for
him to have some fun with the material. (Which he did so, so, so much.)
Not only does Crowe have one of the best understandings of character
and tone in recent memory, but he never settles for delivering a
standard take on a character. The role that put him on the U.S. map, L.A. Confidential‘s Bud White, could be a mindless thug, sure. But Crowe gets why
White behaves the way he does, letting the audience see that White may
hate everybody, but the person he hates most is himself — he’s too
big, he’s too uncontrolled, he’s too dumb. And White’s struggle to
become someone better than his father is the dark heart of L.A. Confidential.
As a leading man and a phenomenal talent, we are pleased to welcome
Crowe into the Second Glance Rep family. While Crowe has some theater
training — if you can call The Rocky Horror Show
theater — , he’s known as a movie actor and has no intent to return to
the stage, it seems. The once-terror of Hollywood seems to have been
mellowed by fatherhood and middle age, but his commitment to the work
and low tolerance for bullshit makes him a perfect fit with our
company. We look forward to his reunions with Ed Harris (their
interplay was some of the best stuff in A Beautiful Mind,
especially Harris’ ability to intimidate Crowe) as well as his scenes
opposite Mary-Louise Parker. While he’s not currently attached to any
projects, he’s in talks for the straight-man lead in Beer Battered Bedmates, a supporting role as one of the prisoners in the “Mist meets Con Air” Warehouse, and as the mayor of the small New England town where all the melodrama takes place in Aqueduct of Tears. – RathBandu
#17 Monica Bellucci
Monica Bellucci - representing Modeling
Where does Monica Bellucci fit in as a SCAB? Picking a model for an
acting company is risky business; being gorgeous does not an actress
make. Though a heavy chest might be the only performance some audience
members are looking to see, it doesn’t quite cut the mustard in a
repertory company. To quote Monica, “Acting is not words. Holly Hunter didn’t speak in The Piano and she won an Oscar“.
Sound like your typical model-turned-actress? What we have here is more
than just a Babe Draft mix-up – this is an actress who knows how to use
her body as a fully-realized tool to achieve something more than just
tightening the pants of every man in the audience (which happens too).
And that’s not to say it’s her only talent. Sadly, it seems that
bringing her “guns” to set is almost all that her American films have
utilized her for, and we haven’t gotten a real feeling for how talented
she could be in English films. In Europe she’s has 6 nominations and a
win for acting, in America she has the Matrix sequels and Shoot Em Up.
My draft decision is based on the idea that given the right material
and utilizing her as more than ‘babe #3′, she’s just as capable of
rising to the top of the food chain here as well, be it in lead or
What she brings to the table? Acting ability than transcends language
barriers (not that she has this barrier, she’s fluent in four
languages). The rape scene in Irreversible
was one of the most harrowing things anyone could be asked to watch –
her performance, without any dialoge save for some muffled screams,
sells it with gut-wrenching realism. It’s no fluke; the content and
graphic nature of the scene is a huge factor, but would it have been so
controversial and affecting if the actress didn’t make it seem like a
true act caught on film? She takes her “Acting is not words”
philosophy to bat here: from the way her free hand is constantly trying
to pry the hand off her mouth, to keep her clothes on.. the convulsions
and dry heaving afterwords, her body trembling violently as the shock
wears off and brutal reality sets in.. and how she slowly tries to inch
back away from her assailant after, these seemingly small details are
what lift it from a disgusting, gratuitous exploitation scene into a
heartbreaking one. Again, it’s not to say physical performance is her
only talent or that she could only be dramatic in a rape scene, it’s
just a vivid example of what can be achieved by a former model with, as
far as I know no formal acting training. Yes, I realize this example is
getting older and outdated, I’m trying. This might seem a bit
ridiculous, but having a European actress, and a really dramatically
strong one at that, I think is going to help ol’ Jean-Claude out in my
films – I won’t make him play an American and take away from his
attempts to act seriously while struggling with the accent. Anyway, I’m
not going to break down why Bellucci is great for every genre like my
past choices, but I strongly believe she is capable of a range we
haven’t seen required of her yet, and even if I’m wrong, there are so many great transition shots I can use her breasts for that it’s still worth the selection. – Jesse Giles
#18 Ian Holm
Nothing provided yet. - JonStrickland
#19 John Turturro
The John Turturro of America is a unique species, by the fact that
there’s only one member of it at any time. Possessing chameleonic
capabilities and fearsome acting skills, it’s make him one if not the
top character actor of it’s generation. Coming from a primarily
independent background, he first came to our notice in Miller’s
Crossing, and since there has been part of our cinematic landscape,
delivering contently there and there, making characters stand out of
already stand-out movies (The Big Lebowski). Or he’d look around the
set and finding no acting energy, he’ll out-act the entire cast in a
given movie, such as Mr. Deed or Transformers. Evidently, he’s
remembered for these roles, yet he capable of a subtlety that makes him
as fascinating as the more manic roles.
Turturro is a gift from whatever deity you worship, sent to Earth for
our cinematic sins to let us remember what a character actor should be. – Martin Savage
#20 Josh Brolin
A lot of good actors never get the chance to show how great than can be.
Josh Brolin was one of those who shuffled from tv series to
independent and B movies always doing solid work but never got the
right material or a chance to work with the right directors. That
changed with the Coen Brothers and Ridley Scott.
Josh Brolin is the prototypical everyman. He attacks his roles with
incredible ease and grace. In NCFOM he gave a brilliant nuanced
performance showing that while he may have had to do some lesser work
he was always working on his craft. You don’t just wake up after 20
years of sleepwalking through roles to give a performance like that. – Anyawatchin Angel
#21 Diane Lane
Well, first of all, just look at her.
Let’s get the superficial stuff out the way: Diane Lane is gorgeous.
But there’s a real-world quality to her beauty that helps create a
connection between the audience and the characters she plays – she can
combine movie-star presence with a kind of accessibility. It’s this
aspect, added to her natural, unmannered style of performance and her
ability to convey longing and independence with equal degrees of
strength and conviction, that makes her work in UNFAITHFUL and A WALK
ON THE MOON so compelling and authentic. She’s a dab hand at rom-coms
(yeah, I own a copy of UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN), and displayed some nifty
fighting skills in JUDGE DREDD. She’s blended seamlessly into terrific
ensembles but when the time has come to take centre stage she’s
acquitted herself awfully well. Plus she was Ellen Aim in STREETS OF
FIRE – case closed, motherfucker.
She’s good enough for the star of HIGHLANDER and Josh Brolin. She’s good enough for you, pal. - tommy five tone
#22 Scarlett Johanssen
Scarlett is getting beat up on the other board a bit, but thats just a case of selective memory. I will give you Black Dahlia. But no one is good in Black Dahlia, save my number one pick, of course. But she is great in Ghost World, Lost in Translation, The Man Who Wasn’t There, and of course, she’s excellent in Match Point,
which is less than three years old, by the way. Other than Natalie
Portman (who I wanted), I don’t think you’re going to come up with a
better young actress that brings the hotness so persuasively. As for
her often mocked album, she chose to do Tom Waits covers, which shows
at least she has excellent taste.
But I could give a shit about all that. This is truly a strategic pick
in every sense. I want what she brings to the table because I know
exactly what I’m going to cast her in. Basically, I need someone to
play a ridiculously hot slut, and Scarlett can do that. There are two
roles specifically she’s here for-a distinctly unglamorous leading role
in what is turning into a very black comedy, and an action movie role
that will be very similar territory to what I hope Frank Miller is
doing with her in The Spirit. Beyond Pluto is still not quite formed,
but she’ll have something unusual to do in it. I see her playing
smaller roles in the others, but we shall see. – Arjen Rudd
#23 Michael Caine
A good repertory company needs an anchor. A living legend to ground the
group with his wisdom, experience, and gravitas. Not all actors make it
to this age with their greatness intact. No offense to current or
future draft picks, but some actors, like DeNiro and Pacino, lose their
talent over the years and have us longing for their prime. This is not
the case with Michael Caine. As an actor, he can shift effortlessly
between whimsical bemusement to serpentine audacity. Caine is a lot of
fun but unlike living caricature like Christopher Walken or demanding
actors like Dustin Hoffman, Caine just plays his part and never ceases
to amaze at how he can remain so distinct yet so adaptable to such a
wide variety of roles. I am fortunate to have such a legend in my
company and I humbly welcome Sir Michael Caine to The Secret Weapons. – Matt Goldberg
#24 Paul Giamatti
I know we’re supposed to be writing these up in our own words, but I
have to quote Matt Goldberg who succinctly summed up the strengths of
Giamatti as thus. “He’s an actor that not only understand his
character, but is able to make sure that his performance is in line
with the tone of the entire film.” That perfectly sums up his talents.
When the role calls for subtlety (see Duets) he can almost seep into
the background, yet when he needs to play it over the top (see Shoot Em
Up) he can chew scenery with the best hams in Hollywood. When he needs
to carry a film, he most certainly keeps all eyes riveted on him and
there’s no doubt that he’s leading man material. Yet, in a film like
Cinderella Man when he’s filling the supporting sidekick role, he never
once let’s you forget who the star is and he works his ass off to make
the film and his co-stars shine. What Giamatti does the best is
humanize his usually schlubby, downtrodden characters and let you see
what makes them tick. His two most celebrated roles from Sideways and
American Splendor could have been turned into one note caricatures in
lesser hands, but he played both about as perfectly as they could be
played. He’s perfected the everyman role and celebrates every quirk,
tick and mental imperfection. The guy has taken every character that
could have been summed up as a loser at some stage of development and
made sure that by the time the end credits roll, you don’t see them as
one. Simply put, Giamatti is one of the greatest character actors
working today and not only does he make any film he’s in a little
better, he makes those around him a little better. – Sacrelicious Supersucker
#25 Christian Bale
Nothing provided yet. – Justin Clark
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