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Salma Hayek celebrates her 50th birthday today. Hayek began working in Mexican film and television in the late 1980s. Her first work in American film came from producer-director Robert Rodriguez; Hayek has made several films with Rodriguez, including From Dusk till Dawn and The Faculty. And before those came the film that gave American audiences their first look at her—her very first scene in that film shows her ability to have an impact on people (and vehicles):
It doesn’t happen very often. Less so now than in the past. But every now and then the right actor finds the right role in the right movie at exactly the right time and magic happens. A star is born! In the June 1996 issue of Movieline magazine, Virginia Campbell and Charles Oakley took a look at some star-making roles.
Steven Baigelman may have been the luckiest rookie in Hollywood in 1996. Not only did he sell his first script, the quirky crime comedy, Feeling Minnesota, he was also tapped to direct the movie despite the fact he had no prior experience. And then, big league Hollywood stars were cast in the lead roles! How does someone get so damn lucky? Michael Atkinson tried to figure it out in the Young Hollywood issue of Movieline Magazine.
Back in the early nineties, Keanu Reeves was a promising young actor who looked like he just might have a future beyond Bill & Ted. He was also a notoriously spastic interview subject. In the February 1990 issue of Movieline Magazine, Joe Queenan patiently if somewhat condescendingly asked Reeves about his career and his co-stars while assuring him that everything was going to be all right.
Writer-director Eli Roth is best known for making grisly horror movies like Cabin Fever and Hostels 1 and 2. He’s credited with being one of the creators of the torture porn subgenre. With Knock Knock, Roth is clearly going for something a little different. But torture and porn are still part of the equation. The movie attempts to be a suspenseful thriller, an erotic cautionary tale and a social satire, but the mix is off. It’s too silly to be taken seriously, but never really funny either. And while the girls are attractive, the movie is too dull and shrill to be sexy.
This past weekend, Dumb and Dumber To exceeded even the most optimistic box office projections. Critics were unkind to the sequel, but audiences who have been waiting twenty years for more Dumb and Dumber didn’t care. Now there’s talk of a Dumb and Dumber trilogy!
The box office success of Dumb and Dumber To has some people talking about a comeback for Jim Carrey. Carrey’s movie career has cooled over the last decade or so. His last unqualified box office hit was arguably Bruce Almighty in 2003. When a Dumb and Dumber sequel was announced, it seemed to some (myself included) like a desperation move. But now, it seems like a “hail mary pass” that connected.
Keanu Reeves has worked with some of the greatest directors around. He’s been directed by Ron Howard, Kathryn Bigelow, Lawrence Kasdan, Gus Van Sant, Francis Ford Coppola and Bernardo Bertolucci just to name a few. His costars include Al Pacino, Gene Hackman, Morgan Freeman, Sandra Bullock and of course the legendary Alex Winter. He’s done comedy, drama, action movies, period pieces and sci fi. Speed made Reeves an action movie star and The Matrix made him an icon. But post Matrix, Reeves’ career has slowed down. His last unqualified hit was in 2003.
What the hell happened?
It’s time for another retro flashback as I dig into old issues of Movieline Magazine. For this installment, I went back 20 years to March 1994. Nicole Kidman was the cover story in which she discussed being overshadowed by her more-famous then-husband, Tom Cruise. Stephen Dorff was labeled “The Next Big Thing” (Isn’t hindsight funny?) Reese Witherspoon, Ben Stiller and Brendan Fraser were up-and-coming actors interviewed for the issue.
The article I’m focusing on was titled All The Right Moves. In this article, Movieline played armchair agent and placed 10 young (at the time) actors in roles they thought would be perfect for them. Were they right? How did things play out? With the benefit of 20 years of 20/20 hindsight, I will be answering those questions.
I was doing some research when I came across an article in an old Movieline Magazine. The article was about the hot young Hollywood stars of 1991. Who did they pick as the stars of the future? And were they right? Let’s take a look. Read the rest of this entry