A-List: Eva Green
“I think this [Showtime’s Penny Dreadful] and Sin City 2 have officially ended Eva Green’s time on the ‘It’ list.”
The quote above comes from a commenter on the Lebeau’s Le Blog FB Page. (If you haven’t already done so, like us already!) The comment sparked a bit of debate between myself and the commenter. Even after the conversation had concluded, I was thinking about Green and her status in Hollywood. I don’t think anyone would argue that Green is currently on the A-list. But she certainly has the potential to be. Following her turn as a Bond girl in the 2006 hit, Casino Royale, her name was on everyone’s lips. But in the eight years that followed, Green has yet to become a star.
I could almost ask, “What the hell happened?” But I think it’s still too early to write off Green’s chances of A-list stardom. Because even though she has starred in two disappointing movies this year, I actually think Green is having a very good 2014 career-wise.
Green is a French model-turned-actress. She started out acting in theater. In 2001, Green she was nominated for a Molière Award for her performance in Jalousie en Trois Fax .
Green’s made her film debut in Bernardo Bertolucci’s controversial romance, The Dreamers.
Michael Pitt starred as an American foreign exchange student who goes to Paris in 1968. He befriends a pair of French siblings played by Louis Garrel and Green. Since they are not only French, but French in the 60s, these siblings think nothing of sleeping together naked. Reluctantly, Pitt begins participating in their extremely liberated lifestyle.
The Dreamers was the first movie released in the US with an NC-17 rating since Orgazmo in 1997. Several theater chains refused to carry it because, well, Americans are afraid of sex. Damn the Puritans. Even Green was taken aback by the film’s open sexuality:
“It was as though I was wearing a costume while we were making the film. It was as if I had another story in my mind. So I was left speechless.”
In her first film role, Green was nominated for the European Film Award for Best Actress.
In 2005, Green appeared in Ridley Scott’s Crusade epic, Kingdom of Heaven.
Orlando Bloom starred as a blacksmith who may or may not be the son of a pirate. Actually his father is played by Liam Neeson and his character is not a pirate. But the movie probably would have been a lot more fun if he had been. Instead, he is a Crusader who recruits his son to the cause. Sadly, Johnny Depp is nowhere to be found. No Keira Knightley either although Green shows up as an exotic princess. Edward Norton played her brother, the king, although Norton was uncredited and his face is covered by a mask the whole time. The movie never addresses whether or not these siblings sleep together naked, so I’m just going to assume they do.
Kingdom of Heaven opened to mixed reviews. It was a box office bomb in the US, but it performed well overseas. US audiences were not yet familiar with her, but internationally, she was a rising star. Which is exactly the sort of resume that can get you cast a Bond girl.
In 2006, Green joined the long cinematic tradition of Bond babes in Casino Royale.
Casino Royale was the first Bond movie for Daniel Craig. It was based on Ian Fleming’s first James Bond novel and was therefore treated as a reboot of the series to the degree that the series has ever had any kind of continuity. Green played Vesper Lynd, a British Treasury agent assigned to protect $10 million dollars which Bond is using as a buy-in for a high stakes poker game.
The Bond series was at a critical juncture. Although each of Pierce Brosnan’s four 007 movies was financially successful, they grew increasingly more ridiculous. The series was in danger of becoming a parody of itself. The producers made the controversial decision to let Brosnan go and reboot the series with Craig as Bond. The announcement drew the ire of many Bond fans who referred to Craig as James Blond.
But the movie proved a winner and audiences embraced Craig as the new face of James Bond blond hair and all. The movie was a critical and commercial smash. Green, who had a scene-stealing role, was praised as one of the best Bond girls of all times.