Sony Pictures via Everett Collection
Cate Blanchett recently won her second Academy Award for her brilliant performance in Blue Jasmine , which means that a younger generation of moviegoers is becoming familiar with her work for the first time. Prior to this, Blanchett has been relatively absent from the film industry, devoting her time instead to the Sydney Theatre Company which she co-directed with her husband for six years. Moreover, most moviegoers recognize Blanchett for her brief appearances as Galadriel in the beloved The Lord of The Rings trilogy, or for her performances in more mainstream films like The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) and The Aviator (2004), for which she won her first Academy Award as legendary actress Katharine Hepburn. All of this is fine, but Blanchett’s greatest performances can be found in lesser-known, independent films that mainstream audiences tend to overlook. Below is a list of 10 of these performances to remind us once again why Blanchett is one of the most captivating screen actresses of our time.
1. Jude in I’m Not There. (2007)
In Todd Haynes’ wildly inventive “biopic” of Bob Dylan, Blanchett owns the film as a version of the musician during his electric years. Since the film isn’t told in a linear fashion, audiences didn’t bother to see it, but within seconds it becomes clear that Blanchett is the only performer — male or female — who could have played this role.
2. Philippa in Heaven (2002)
Blanchett is a revelation as a woman who is arrested for terrorist acts and subsequently falls in love with the officer (Giovanni Ribisi) who is supposed to look after her while in a holding cell. Heaven begins as a thriller and ends as one of the most romantic films ever made, with Blanchett taking the audience on this riveting journey every step of the way
3. Sheba Hart in Notes on a Scandal (2006)
Blanchett goes toe-to-toe with acting legend Judi Dench in this taut psychological drama about a teacher (Blanchett) who has an affair with a student and is found out by one of the senior teachers (Dench) at the school. Few films are as impeccably acted as this, and during the film’s intense, climactic showdown, Blanchett shows a side of herself that audiences haven’t seen since.
4. Cate and Shelly in Coffee and Cigarettes (2003)
Coffee and Cigarettes is an anthology film by Jim Jarmusch, and in one of the vignettes entitled “Cousins,” Blanchett stars opposite herself as both Cate and Shelly, two wildly different cousins who reunite over a cup of coffee. Not much happens here, except that we are shown Blanchett’s incredible range as she inhabits both of these characters with equal skill. Who else can pull something like this off and yet make it so watchable and believable?
5. Tracy in Little Fish (2005)
Blanchett is riveting as a drug addict struggling to rebuild her life in this excellent Australian drama. Those who marveled at Blanchett’s ability to confront addiction head-on in Blue Jasmine might be surprised to find that she’s just as fierce in Little Fish, a film that might have earned her a Best Actress Academy Award if it were more popular in the United States.
6. Charlotte Gray in Charlotte Gray (2001)
Blanchett is lovely as a young Scottish woman who joins the French Resistance during WWII to find her boyfriend who is lost in France. Director Gillian Armstrong is known for her beautiful restraint, and Blanchett matches her with a performance that feels so authentic we almost forget she’s acting at all.
7. Kate Wheeler in Bandits (2001)
Who knew Blanchett could be so funny? Bandits is a ridiculous caper that stars Billy Bob Thornton and Bruce Willis as two bank robbers who kidnap Blanchett and fall in love with her. Unlike Heaven, which is somber and serious, Bandits is a playful romp. For those who admired Jennifer Lawrence’s “Live and Let Die” moment in American Hustle, remember that Blanchett did it years ago while dancing to “I Need a Hero” in this film.
8. Veronica Guerin in Veronica Guerin (2003)
In this true story, Blanchett plays Veronica Guerin, an Irish journalist who was murdered by drug dealers when she exposed their crimes in her articles. This is a heartbreaking tale about an ordinary hero, and Blanchett’s riveting turn pays proper homage to Guerin while simultaneously allowing her legacy to live on in the hearts and minds of those fortunate enough to who watch this courageous film.
9. Petal Barr in The Shipping News (2001)
The Shipping News isn’t a great movie, but it is worth mentioning for Blanchett’s scene-stealing turn as Kevin Spacey’s reckless lover who leaves him in the beginning of the movie. Her part is small, but she makes an undeniable impact, and shows how she can make the most of even the slightest roles. For the few scenes she’s in, Blanchett makes us feel like we’ve been with this character forever.
10. Queen Elizabeth I in Elizabeth (1998)
One of the biggest injustices in Academy Awards history is when Gwyneth Paltrow won the Best Actress Oscar for Shakespeare in Love in the same year that Blanchett gave us her rendition of a young Queen Elizabeth in Elizabeth, one of the finest lead performances in the history of cinema. Paltrow is fine, but Blanchett’s work in this film is in a class by itself. This is the one that started it all.
We all know how the story goes: Boy meets girl, boy and girl get drunk, boy and girl get fake married, and — oh f**k, that wedding wasn't fake! It's every single person's worst nightmare. And, for actress and comedian Janeane Garofalo, the sitcom's wacky plot device was revealed to be reality. Garofalo revealed at the New York Comedy Festival's reunion for The Ben Stiller Show that until this past Saturday, she had been unknowingly married to Big Bang Theory producer Rob Cohen for 20 years. Wha? That's crazy talk! Crazy, but true.
According to The New York Post, Garofalo explained, “Rob and I got married, for real, which we had to have a notary dissolve not 30 minutes before we got here tonight … We were married for 20 years until this evening.”
“We got married drunk in Vegas . . . We dated for a year, and we got married at a drive-through chapel in a cab. [We thought] you have to go down to the courthouse and sign papers and stuff, so who knew? We were married, and apparently now that [Rob] is getting married for real, his lawyer dug up something,” says Garofalo.
Holy moly, this is some pretty unbelievable stuff. Unbelievable, but not unheard of. From everyone's favorite mildly incestuous cousins to a hungover toothless man and his stripper, funny people just love gettin' accidentally hitched. Luckily for Garofalo, her surprise marriage ended in a quickie divorce. Not so for these less fortunate brides and grooms, who had things go terribly awry once they said their vows.
Jack Donaghy and Liz Lemon on 30 Rock
While Jack is trying to marry his girlfriend Avery on the show's fifth season, the minister accidentally pronounces Jack and Liz husband and wife. The horror! Before they can undo what had been done, Jack and Liz are forced to go through couples counseling.
George Michael and Maeby Funkë on Arrested Development
Unfortunately, romantic feelings are not so mutual with these kissing cousins. After George Michael and Maeby have a "mock" wedding to appease Alzheimer's patients at the hospital, George Michael decides not to tell Maeby that the wedding was actually real. When the truth gets out — because the truth always does — Maeby is none-too-thrilled. Hey, at least Garofalo and Cohen's wedding was a secret to both parties!
Ross Geller and Rachel Green on Friends
Much like Garofalo's situation, Ross and Rachel tie the knot in a drunken stupor in Sin City. But as the two remember what they had done, things take a turn for the creepy — Ross pretends to have annulled the marriage when, in fact, he never signed the papers. That dastardly so and so!
Stu and Jade in The Hangover
During his inebriated nuptials with Jade (a Vegas Stripper), Stu not only gives away a tooth but also his grandmother's Holocaust ring. At least neither Garofalo or Cohen gave away priceless family heirlooms… that we know of.
Fonzie and Jenny on Happy Days
What starts out as a fun costume party on a boat turns into one heck of a web to unweave when Fonzie and Joanie's friend Jenny realize their farce wedding might actually be real. While the Fonz thought the whole ordeal was just a gag, the fact that an actual sea captain performed the ceremony meant that he might have actually gotten hitched. To complicate matters, Jenny is not so keen on getting the marriage annulled. In classic overly complicated sitcom fashion, our hero is ultimately saved by a technicality — the boat upon which he said "I do" was only a half mile off shore, and, according to Happy Days' Maritime Law, a vessel must be three miles out to see before a sea captain can take matrimonial authority. Needless to say, Garofalo got off easy.
DJ Tanner and Uncle Jesse Marry Their Greek Cousins on Full House
Whatever you do, don't walk around a table with a Greek person — you'll wind up married. Luckily, all it takes to end said marriage is to walk back around the table backwards... at least in the reality of Full House.
Follow Abbey Stone on Twitter @abbeystone
[Photo Credit: Joseph Marzullo/WENN]
Channing Tatum Officially Named the Sexiest Man Alive
Brandy Remembers Whitney Houston with New Album, 'Two Eleven'
Let's Play 'Taylor Swift or 1950s Etiquette Manual?'
From Our Partners:
’Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2’ Star Kristen Stewart on ‘Twilight’ Finale: I’m ‘Desperate’ For a Job Now (VIDEO)
’The Voice’ Top 12 Performance Show: 8 Things You Didn’t See On TV (Celebuzz)
While recent animated blockbusters have aimed to viewers of all ages starting with fantastical concepts and breathtaking visuals but tackling complex emotional issues along the way Ice Age: Continental Drift is crafted especially for the wee ones — and it works. Venturing back to prehistoric times once again the fourth Ice Age film paints broad strokes on the theme of familial relationships throwing in plenty of physical comedy along the way. The movie isn't that far off from one of the many Land Before Time direct-to-video sequels: not particularly innovative or necessary but harmless thrilling fun for anyone with a sense of humor. Unless they have a particular distaste for wooly mammoths the kids will love it.
Ice Age: Continental Drift continues to snowball its cartoon roster bringing back the original film's trio (Ray Romano as Manny the Mammoth Denis Leary as Diego the Sabertooth Tiger and John Leguizamo as Sid the Sloth) new faces acquired over the course of the franchise (Queen Latifah as Manny's wife Ellie) and a handful of new characters to spice things up everyone from Nicki Minaj as Manny's daughter Steffie to Wanda Sykes as Sid's wily grandma. The whole gang is living a pleasant existence as a herd with Manny's biggest problem being playing overbearing dad to the rebellious daughter. Teen mammoths they always want to go out and play by the waterfall! Whippersnappers.
The main thrust of the film comes when Scratch the Rat (whose silent comedy routines in the vein of Tex Avery/WB cartoons continue to be the series highlight) accidentally cracks the singular continent Pangea into the world we know today. Manny Diego and Sid find themselves stranded on an iceberg once again forced on a road trip journey of survival. The rest of the herd embarks to meet them giving Steffie time to realize the true meaning of friendship with help from her mole pal Louis (Josh Gad).
The ham-handed lessons may drag for those who've passed Kindergarten but Ice Age: Continental Drift is a lot of fun when the main gang crosses paths with a group of villainous pirates. (Back then monkeys rabbits and seals were hitting the high seas together pillaging via boat-shaped icebergs. Obviously.) Quickly Ice Age becomes an old school pirate adventure complete with maritime navigation buried treasure and sword fights. Gut (Peter Dinklage) an evil ape with a deadly... fingernail leads the evil-doers who pose an entertaining threat for the familiar bunch. Jennifer Lopez pops by as Gut's second-in-command Shira the White Tiger and the film's two cats have a chase scene that should rouse even the most apathetic adults. Hearing Dinklage (of Game of Thrones fame) belt out a pirate shanty may be worth the price of admission alone.
With solid action (that doesn't need the 3D addition) cartoony animation and gags out the wazoo Ice Age: Continental Drift is entertainment to enjoy with the whole family. Revelatory? Not quite. Until we get a feature length silent film of Scratch's acorn pursuit we may never see a "classic" Ice Age film but Continental Drift keeps it together long enough to tell a simple story with delightful flare that should hold attention spans of any length. Massive amounts of sugar not even required.
[Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox]
Be warned, this interview contains spoilers from the Season Two finale.
The Shameless season finale left us with few questions and despite some of the more dire circumstances (like Monica getting out of dodge, again, and Frank's clear regard for alcohol over his family, again) the season ended with a seldom seen sense of peace for everyone's favorite South Side Chicago family. Clearly, we couldn't just let the finale lie, so Hollywood.com spoke with Shanola Hampton (Veronica) to get a more in depth picture of what all this sudden togetherness means for the Gallaghers and their extended family of neighbors.
The finale ends on such a happy, sweet note. What do you think that means for the series overall, after two seasons of non-stop tumult? I think what you see, and I think this is a central theme in our entire show and in a lot of the episodes, no matter what the people in this world go through, no matter how crazy it gets, no matter the fights and the ugliness that happens, you will see people who love each other to the core and will always be there for one another. So at the end of the day, when all of that is said and done, they have love and they have loyalty. That’s really all you can hope for in life. To have people around you that are that loyal and that love you that much. Fiona and V have such a friend chemistry, but what's unique about their bond and how has it grown in Season Two? What’s great about Veronica and Fiona is there’s no judgment. But Veronica especially will voice her opinion, and really want to stare Fiona in the right direction. But you never see Fiona really get angry with Veronica, because she knows it’s coming from a place of love ... Both Veronica and Fiona trust each other so much because they really are each other’s only true friends. If you have one true friend, you have more than your share. You know you’re going to get the truth both ways. You know that neither one of them is saying it because they want to hurt you ... When that Jasmine character shows up, she tries to get Fiona, Veronica’s best friend, to do all sorts of shenanigans. Veronica points out, ‘This girl is not right.’ And I just want to point that Veronica was right about Jasmine! ... I really like that they have two girl friends on television that are not just like, "Oh, we’re going out for martinis and yadda-yadda-yadda," but shows more of what a friendship is between women. It is a really nice relationship to watch. Season Two held a lot of change and some strife for Kevin and Veronica, where do you hope to see them in Season Three? I’m so protective of the relationship between Kevin and Veronica. I think that they really are one of the most stable and loving couples on television, regardless of the other craziness that happens. You see a true, pure love between the two of them. So I definitely don’t want anything that is going to cause them to break up. That’s Number One. I really do love those two together. As a fan, I’m a fan of Kevin and Veronica’s love ... I loved having the Ethel in our family dynamic. I loved having our little house and our little family. I would either love to see more of what would happen if she came back and we raised her child as our own, or something to the effect of where we do have a family of our own. That can be little cousins to the Gallaghers. I want a Tomorrow Person!
Many people have told me they "don't get" Shameless, what would you say to them? You know what’s funny about it? I haven’t had that experience, to be honest with you. Maybe it’s because of what our fan base is — actually, I can’t even say that, because our fan base expands through so many different ethnicities and age groups. I have walked down the streets of New York, and have in the same five minutes had an African-American 20-year-old girl come and tell me how much she loves the show, and then a 55-year-old Jewish man tell me how much he loves the show ... Most people have said how Frank is a lot like their dad, to which I am like, "Oh, you poor thing!" Or, "This is such a depiction of my family,"in a certain way. Or, "I feel a bit of me in Fiona.” So, it’s been more that people relate to it than they don’t understand it. Of course it’s not a show for everyone, but I think people have been so drawn to it because it’s so raw, and because most of America is under the poverty line, not above it. So they really are able to relate to this family more. Maybe not quite all the outlandish behavior, maybe not some of the ways they go about getting money, but they definitely relate...
You lived in Chicago, do you feel that the series is showing a faithful depiction of the neighborhood? I think the neighborhood we are depicting — we shoot in that neighborhood. And I think what has made Shameless be successful is that we’re showing a different side of America, but one that is very relevant, and one that is very real. So it’s really nice for us to go to this neighborhood, and those houses in this area where people have less, and really bring our show there and also bring light to other places. What's it like working so... intimately with Steve Howey? Steve Howey is probably the funniest man in Hollywood. For real. He is just that person that can make you laugh at all times. He is so silly, so crazy, and he’s also very protective of me and really watches out for me. Especially when we have the more sexual situations. He’s just the easiest partner. I am working with the best partner in the entire world ... He was a lot more nervous at the beginning of it than I was. There was one scene where there was actual sweat there, and I’m a germophobe. So, that was a little much. That was not the best of our moments. I don’t think you ever get fully comfortable doing those scenes. Both of us are married to great people, and luckily we get along with each other’s spouses. But it still doesn’t make it — when you’re not with your significant other in the bedroom, even when it’s for fake, it’s still like, "Okay, this is kind of weird."
Looking back at the last two seasons, how do you see Kevin and V's progression?
The first season was a nice framework of getting to know the family, and kind of getting to dab a bit into who the characters are. And this season specifically, we were able to really get deeper, and really see the relationships grow. It has come a long way, which I’m really excited about. When I think of Veronica and Kevin, you got to see all the crazy sex stuff in Season One, but you got to really get to know their relationship and what the next step is, which is starting a family, and what that means for them. It’s been so fun to play, and it’s been so nice to really, really get into their lives.
The bachelor admits he really didn't want kids a decade ago, but the fact that he's now surrounded by the children of friends and family members has made him realise he could be a good dad.
The About A Boy star tells the upcoming issue of America's Parade magazine, "I have so many nephews and nieces and cousins and godchildren, I like the thought (of kids), but that’s on the basis that I can leave after 10 minutes.
"I don’t know what it would be like 24 hours a day. I think I’d have a lot of nannies.
"But I haven’t given up hope... I find I’m not as bad with children as I used to be."