We’re going to be ranging far wider and cheesier than the above before the end of this awards season, we promise you.
But seriously, God (Buddha?), please prevent Caryn James from any more articles like her howler of a Sunday Times piece on the sudden deluge of actors taking on gay roles, in which she take the following point, which we’ll lay out in the snappy, concise, dumb style of your average magazine front-of-book:
In: Playing gay
Five minutes ago: Playing mentally disabled
Out: Playing in blackface
And proceeds to subject it to some painful and awkward analysis: Most of the actors playing flashy gay parts this year aren’t gay! (Even though the Internet sometimes says they are!) Which makes it less threatening to Middle America! Where they’re often threatened by gays! And sometimes even though a non-gay actor makes the massive stretch of acting like he or she is gay, it still doesn’t work! But what actually drives us nuts is that while there might be a point to be made here (several good ones, actually), she fails to arrive at one, linking "Capote" (and Philip Seymour Hoffman‘s performance there was really more about "Ray"-style ventriloquism than sexuality), "The Dying Gaul" (which, beyond being campy, is also such a small indie that it probably won’t get beyond the top ten markets, which is what most gay-themed films are limited to anything), "Transamerica" (same) and "Brokeback Mountain" (which is shaping up to be big enough to shake shit up) to add up to…a trend report?
Kevin Maher at the London Times suggests that playing a drunk is actually the over-tried and true Oscar bait.
Elsewhere on the burgeoning Oscar front, Tom O’Neil at the LA Times refutes reports that there’s nothing to talk about regarding the Best Actress race (beyond Reese Witherspoon in "Walk the Line," who’s been getting buzz for, like, forever). He points to Felicity Huffman in "Transamerica" (who is actually very good), Zhang Ziyi in "Memoirs of a Geisha" (though the cool kids are saying it’s Gong Li who walks away with the film), Keira Knightley in "Pride & Prejudice" (buoyed on recent glowing reviews), and "The New World"‘s young newbie Q’Orianka Kilcher.
+ The Winner Is…Only Acting Gay (NY Times)
+ The message in the bottle is Oscar winner (London Times)
+ A race worth running (LA Times)
+ You want a babysitter with brains to burn? Call Jodie (Independent)