December 3: Happy Birthday Daryl Hannah and Jean-Luc Godard


For the second consecutive year on this date, we have a WTHH headliner, as Daryl Hannah is celebrating her 57th.  She attended USC and studied acting and dance, but had already made her first film appearance, in Brian De Palma’s The Fury, filmed when she was only 16.  She first attracted notice as the replicant Pris in Blade Runner, and through the 1980s was a fairly prominent actress, starring as a mermaid named Madison in Splash and as the title character in Roxanne, and appearing in the ensemble cast of Steel Magnolias.

Hannah’s WTHH article details the subsequent course of her career.  In the early 2000s, she had something of a resurgence.  Indie film fans know this as the time she made Casa de los babys and Silver City with John Sayles, while action film audiences will remember her as Elle Driver in the Kill Bill films.  Her most recent major project has been the regular role of Angelica Turing on Sense8.

Jean-Luc Godard, possibly the most significant figure of the French New Wave, is turning 87.  The French-Swiss filmmaker was born in Paris but spent much of his youth in Switzerland.  In the early 1950s he became active in some of Paris’s film societies, notably the Cinémathèque Française, and began writing for the film magazine Cahiers du Cinéma in 1951.  He began making short films in the 1950s, and in 1959 took the film world by storm with his first feature, À bout de souffle, or Breathless.  It is considered one of the landmarks of the French New Wave and pioneered now-common film techniques like jump cuts.

Godard followed with a series of films in the early and mid 1960s that permanently established his reputation among the greatest directors ever—Sight & Sound’s 2002 ranking had him 3rd behind only Welles and Hitchcock.  His biggest commercial success was probably Contempt, from 1963, but many of the best known films he made were with the actress who was both his wife and his “muse” for much of that period, Anna Karina—they include The Little Soldier, My Life to Live, Pierrot le Fou, and Band of Outsiders.

Since the late 1960s, Godard’s films have often been considered less accessible—many of them overtly reflect his political views—but he has remained active to the present.  Currently, he seems to make a new feature about once every 4-6 years.

Former child actor Brian Bonsall is 36; he will be remembered for his roles as Andrew Keaton on Family Ties and Alexander Rodzhenko (son of Worf) on Star Trek: The Next GenerationTiffany Hadish, who was a regular on NBC’s The Carmichael Show and gave a well-received supporting performance in Girls Trip earlier this year, turns 38.  Michael Angarano, who is 30, has starred in films like Sky High and Empire State, and will join Amanda Seyfried, among others, in the cast of the upcoming GringoJake T. Austin, who is 23 today, has had regular roles on The Wizards of Waverly Place and The Fosters.

Melody Anderson, who turns 62, was in a variety of 1980s films, most notably as Dale Arden in Flash Gordon.  After retiring from acting she earned a Master’s in Social Work at NYU and has a private social work practice, along with a busy schedule as a public speaker.

Spanish footballer David Villa turns 36 today.  He starred for Spain at the 2008 European Championships and the 2010 World Cup, and is Spain’s all-time leading goalscorer in international competition with 59 goals.

English comedian Mel Smith (1952-2013) was known for the sketch comedy series Alas Smith and Jones and for founding the TV production company Talkback; American audiences might remember him as The Albino from The Princess Bride.

Last year’s December 3 headliners were Julianne Moore and Brendan Fraser.

Julianne Moore turns 57 today.  She has appeared in three feature films this year—Wonderstruck, Suburbicon, and Kingsman: The Golden Circle.  She will also star in the upcoming Gloria, Chilean director Sebastián Lelio’s remake of his 2013 Spanish-language film of the same title.  Brendan Fraser, our other WTHH birthday today, is turning 49.  He has two movies in post-production, and is scheduled to have regular roles on two upcoming TV series, FX’s Trust and AT&T Audience’s Condor.

Amanda Seyfried, who celebrates her 32nd, has been in several films this year, including The Last Word and The Clapper, and will return to the role of Sophie Sheridan for Mamma Mia! Here We Go AgainAnna Chlumsky, who is 37 today, received her fifth consecutive Primetime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for the role of Amy Brookheimer on Veep.  Also 37 is Jenna Dewan Tatum, who hosts the NBC reality competition series World of DanceAndrew Stanton, who is 52, has directed a few recent episodes of Stranger Things and is one of the writers for Toy Story 4Adam Wingard, who directed this year’s Death Note and is slated to direct Godzilla vs. Kong, is turning 35.  Ozzy Osborne, who turns 69 today, concluded Black Sabbath’s The End Tour earlier this year.

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.


Posted on December 3, 2017, in Celebrity Birthdays and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I know Daryl Hannah from Blade Runner and Kill Bill, of course, but her John Sayles films are also worth checking out, particularly Casa de los babys.

    If you have a serious interest in film, it’s pretty much a must to watch some Godard at some point. I’ve seen, and generally enjoyed, his Breathless, Contempt, and several of his films with the bewitching Anna Karina, like Band of Outsiders and Pierrot le fou.

    Like most of the cast of Flash Gordon, Melody Anderson does a good job of making that classic of “so bad its good”-ness fun to watch. She has definitely had an interesting post-acting career.

    Birthday series will take another day off tomorrow, but return Tuesday with a pair of directors from the studio era as headliners.


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