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October 3: Happy Birthday Alicia Vikander and Gwen Stefani

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Swedish actress Alicia Vikander is 28 today.  She began acting in Swedish television and won the Guldbagge Award for Best Actress (the Swedish Oscars) for the lead role in the 2009 film Pure.  She then played Kitty Shcherbatskaya in Joe Wright’s adaptation of Anna Karenina, and received a BAFTA Rising Star nomination for playing Princess Caroline Matilda in A Royal Affair:

In the past few years Vikander has emerged as an international star.  In 2015 she appeared in four major films, winning Best Supporting Actress for her role in The Danish Girl (a bit controversially, as there was a good argument that her role was a lead part).  She was nominated for Golden Globes for both Best Actress (The Danish Girl) and Best Supporting Actress (Ex Machina) and won a variety of other awards for one or both of those movies.

This year Vikander has appeared in Jason Bourne and The Light Between the Oceans.  Her upcoming filmography includes Submergence, Wim Wenders’ adaptation of the novel by J. M. Ledgard, as well as the new Tomb Raider film reboot.

Gwen Stefani, who turns 47 today, began her musical career with No Doubt, a reggae and ska influenced rock band which she has been part of for 30 years.  After a slow start, No Doubt had a huge success with their third album, Tragic Kingdom, in 1995—it reached #1 on the Billboard 200 and has sold an estimated 16 million copies worldwide.  In 2004, Stefani issued her first solo album, and a year later had her first #1 single:

Stefani has continued to record and tour, both as a solo artist and with No Doubt.  Her most recent album, This Is What the Truth Feels Like, was released earlier this year and became her first solo album to reach #1 on the Billboard 200.  She has won 3 Grammys, two with No Doubt and one as a solo artist.

At one time, Clive Owen, who is 52 today, seemed on track to become a major film star.  He was an Oscar nominee and Golden Globe winner for Closer, starred in Antoine Fuqua’s King Arthur, played Dwight McCarthy in Sin City, and was in the critically acclaimed Children of Men.  He was also rumored, at times, to be a possible replacement for Pierce Brosnan as James Bond.  These days, he’s more likely to be found on the small screen: he was an Emmy and Golden Globe nominee for HBO’s Hemingway & Gellhorn, and picked up another Golden Globe nomination as the star of Cinemax’s The Knick.

WTHH subject Neve Campbell, who celebrates her 43rd, starred as one of the great Final Girls, Sidney Prescott of the Scream series, and in Party of Five.  She was recently seen on the 4th season of Netflix’s House of Cards.  Also turning 43 is Lena Headey, who is a 3-time Emmy nominee as Cersei Lannister in A Game of Thrones.  She also starred in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles and in films like Imagine Me & You, 300 and DreddSeann William Scott, who turns 40 today, played Steve Stifler in the four American Pie films.  Tessa Thompson, who is 33, played civil rights activist Diane Nash in Selma and will appear in next year’s Thor: Ragnarok as Valkyrie.  Shannyn Sossamon, who turns 38, starred in films such as A Knight’s Tale and The Rules of Attraction, and more recently was seen in season 3 of Sleepy Hollow.

Canadian director Denis Villeneuve, who turns 49 today, is a three-time winner of the Genie Award (Canada’s Oscar equivalents) for Best Director.  More recently he has moved to Hollywood and made the critically acclaimed crime films Prisoners and SicarioRoy Horn, who turns 72, was once half of the star attraction at Las Vegas’s Mirage hotel—Siegfried & Roy.  They were pretty famous, making cameos in films like Casino and Ocean’s Eleven.  Then came the night when Roy was bitten in the neck by one of their white tigers.  Horn survived, but it was the end of the act.  Jack Wagner, who turns 57, is a long-time mainstay of soap operas, both in prime time (Melrose Place) and daytime (General Hospital, The Bold and the Beautiful).  Janel Moloney celebrates her 47th birthday; she was a two time Emmy nominee for The West Wing and is a regular on HBO’s The LeftoversJohn Patrick Shanley is a Pulitzer Prize and Tony winner for his play Doubt: A Parable, and won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay for Moonstruck.  He turns 66 today.

In music, Lindsey Buckingham turns 67 today.  The singer-songwriter is best known for his years with Fleetwood Mac, one of the best-selling groups of the 1970s and ’80s.  Buckingham was the lead guitarist and one of the groups main vocalists from 1975-87, and again from 1997 to the present.  He also wrote several of their biggest hits, like this one:

More music birthdays: Keb’ Mo’ (given name Kevin Moore), who turns 65, is a three-time Grammy-winning blues guitarist and singer-songwriter.  Singer-actress Ashlee Simpson, who turns 32, had her first two albums, Autobiography and I Am Me, reach #1 on the Billboard 200 chart.  Tommy Lee, drummer and co-founder of heavy metal band Motley Crue, turns 54.  Chubby Checker (given name Ernest Evans) turns 75.  His most famous hit, “The Twist,” gave rise to a popular dance craze of the early 1960s.  Stevie Ray Vaughn (1954-1990) built such a reputation as a blues guitarist in a relatively short career that he ranked 12th in Rolling Stone’s ranking of the 100 greatest guitarists.  Eddie Cochran (1938-1960) died in a taxi accident before his 22nd birthday, but left us rock classics like “Summertime Blues” and “C’mon Everybody.”  Singer-songwriter Alan O’Day (1940-2013) wrote hits like Helen Reddy’s “Angie Baby,” the Righteous Brothers’ “Rock and Roll Heaven,” and his own “Undercover Angel.”

Warner Oland (1879-1938) was a Swedish actor best-known for playing a Chinese character, detective Charlie Chan, in 16 films.  Charles Middleton (1874-1949) was an American actor best known for playing a man from another planet, Ming the Merciless in the three Flash Gordon serials.  Gertrude Berg (1899-1966) was one of the first women to become a major radio star as the creator/writer/star of The Goldbergs.  Berg also won an Emmy when the show moved to television, and later won a Tony for A Majority of OneRay Stark (1915-2004) was a very successful independent producer.  His credits include two Best Picture nominees, Funny Girl and The Goodbye Girl, as well as several other films written by Neil Simon, and an Emmy-winning television movie, Barbarians at the Gate.  Novelist Gore Vidal (1925-2012) was known for Myra Breckenridge, 1876, Lincoln and many other works.  He was a sometime screenwriter who worked as a script doctor on Ben Hur.

Director Leo McCarey (1896-1969) was a three-time Oscar winner.  He won Best Director for the screwball comedy The Awful Truth and for Going My Way, the first of two films featuring Bing Crosby as the musically-inclined priest, Father Chuck O’Malley, and also won Best Original Story for the latter film.  He was also known for Duck Soup, often considered the Marx Brothers’ best film, and for the second Father O’Malley film, The Bells of St. Mary’s.

Gaius Cassius Longinus (85-42 BCE) was a Roman politician and a leader of the conspiracy which assassinated Julius Caesar in 44 BCE.  He has been played on film, in adaptations of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, by John Gielgud, Richard Johnson, and David Collings, and on television in the HBO/BBC series Rome by Guy Henry.

If today is your birthday, congratulations on sharing your big day with these notable names.  Birthday wishes to everyone celebrating a big day today.  Come back tomorrow for more celebrity birthdays.

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Posted on October 3, 2016, in Celebrity Birthdays and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. It took me a moment to place Alicia Vikander from Ex Machina. I didn’t love the movie as much as some people did, but she was terrific in it. I could see her playing an action heroine like Lara Croft. Hopefully the reboot is better than the movies starring Angelina Jolie.

    Gwen Stefani is a massive pop star, no doubt. And I swear on my life, that pun was not intended. You won’t believe me, but it’s true. She still dating that country singer from The Voice, right?

    I was never a big Neve Campbell. I was a bit too old for the whole Party of Five thing. When the first Scream came out, I was more taken with Rose McGowan. Denise Richards was the breakout star of Wild Things. But I have come to appreciate Campbell on House of Cards and Mad Men.

    Clive Owen and Seann William Scott are today’s future WTHH candidates.

    Lena Headey is always terrific. That Terminator show was uneven, but better than any of the recent movies. She kills it on Game of Thrones.

    Do we all agree that Lindsey Buckingham is under-rated? Maybe not. He’s certainly enjoyed a great deal of success as part of Fleetwood Mac. But since his name isn’t in the band name and he’s not Stevie Nicks, I feel like he may be overlooked. The Vacation theme song is a great one.

    Okay, I really need to get to that FTWD recap. Dang two hour finale…

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    • Yeah, I think Lindsey Buckingham is a bit on the underappreciated side. Along with the awesome “Holiday Road” here, I also like another one of his solo songs, “Go Insane” (it’s played in the “Miami Vice” episode ‘The Great McCarthy”). Don’t mind if I do!

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      • Along with Lindsey Buckingham’s many other accomplishments, as a fan of the late John Stewart (see September 5 Birthday article), I have always appreciated Lindsey’s role as the producer of John’s Bombs Away Dream Babies album, by far his greatest commercial success (it also featured Stevie Nicks doing backup vocals on a few tracks).

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  2. All 88 Diamond-Certified Albums Ranked From Worst to Best: Critic’s Take

    http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/billboard-lists/7526410/diamond-certified-album-riaa-ranked?utm_source=twitter

    No Doubt, Tragic Kingdom (10x Platinum, 1996)

    The national introduction of spunk-punk superstar Gwen Stefani could do with 10 perfect less bloat and 20 percent less self-seriousness, certainly. But the diversity of singles predicts the later musical twists and turns band and singer would take in their careers: “Just a Girl” is the Alternative Nation’s own “Kids in America,” “Spiderwebs” nudged the mainstream ever closer to embracing a ska revival, and “Don’t Speak” could’ve been a Peter Cetera power ballad a decade earlier.

    Fleetwood Mac, Rumours (1977, 20x Platinum)

    Late-‘70s Fleetwood Mac may have been a living soap opera, but soaps don’t have soundtracks this good – copious amounts of sex, drugs and betrayal inspiring the creeping-smile funk of “You Make Loving Fun” and the shrugging devastation of “Dreams,” classics that somehow manage not to let torrential emotion overwhelm immaculate craft. Side two has some duds and “Don’t Stop” may not be salvageable from Clinton-era misuse, but no musical document of a period this messy should ever risk total perfection.

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  3. No Doubt Thowback Music Videos:

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  4. Happy Birthday to the lovely Alicia Vikander. She was wonderful in “The Danish Girl”, and she totally deserved the Oscar. I also saw Alicia in the Bradley Cooper movie “Burnt”, and she was the best part of it. (I do not recommend it.)

    I hope Alicia will wow me with her future performances.

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  5. Gwen Stefani has definitely left her mark on the music industry. I thought Clive Owen would have more of an impact in his chosen profession (loved his character in “Sin City”, one of those films I can view over and over again), but I don’t know what the hell happened.

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  6. The Ashton Kutcher curse

    http://www.grunge.com/26479/ashton-kutcher-curse/s/seann-william-scott-dude-wheres-my-car/

    Seann William Scott (Dude, Where’s My Car?)

    Dude, Where’s My Car? performed well at the box office but was panned by critics, something that Seann William Scott would soon become accustomed to. While Kutcher went on to get shots at serious roles in films like The Butterfly Effect and eventually established himself as a leading rom-com actor, Scott went from one doomed project to the next, with Evolution and Bulletproof Monk both failing to recoup even half of their multi-million dollar budgets.

    Scott recently tried to move away from playing the perennial clown in black comedy drama Just Before I Go, though his attempt at something a little more serious was met with critical scorn and audience indifference. The film (directed by former Friends star Courteney Cox) was labeled a Garden State ripoff in which filthy jokes gradually cede ground to sentimental slush, an opinion echoed by several Rotten Tomatoes critics. The go-to film review aggregator currently lists Just Before I Go as having a 10 percent approval rating.

    When Dude, Where’s My Car? hit cinemas in 2000, Kutcher’s co-star Seann William Scott was one of the most sought-after names in comedy, fresh off the back of a Teen Choice Award for his performance as Steve Stifler in American Pie. Despite that film’s critical and commercial success, Scott’s popularity didn’t seem to last long, taking a sharp nosedive in the aftermath of his collaboration with Kutcher.

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  7. Gwen Stefani’s Hollaback Girl was actually the very first song to sell a million copies digitally. This was back in early 2005, when most record companies had stopped releasing physical singles yet when digital sales (like ITunes and Amazon) were still in their infancy. Hollaback Girl released at a perfect time to become a huge mainstream hit and also be desirable enough to a younger audience to appeal to those who first began buying songs online.

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  8. Why Hollywood Won’t Cast Seann William Scott Anymore

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