From Faber & Faber's Projections: Tod Lippy's interview with Juliet Taylor
Tod Lippy: I'm guessing that many of the character actors you cast are
theater-based; is there ever any situation where the kind of actor that
might be able to command a theater doesn't "work" for film?
Juliet Taylor: You know, that's a question people used to ask me all the
time, but I haven't heard it in a while. I think that if you have magic on
stage, you're going to have it onscreen. Usually, I think the problem is
that many actors who are touted as great are really quite dull. This is
something that Woody and I talk about a lot. People overinflate how
wonderful actors are - every generation, they'll say so-an-so is so
wonderful and brilliant. And they're really only okay, you know? They're
not that great. I look back at my lists of actors and actresses in their
20s from years ago, and I swear 75 per cent of them aren't even acting
anymore. Did you see the article about comic genius in the New York Times?
They were talking about how rare it actually is. Most people concurred
that "genius" is an overused word. It just doesn't come along that often.
People always say how hard it is for actors to make it, to be known. But
if somebody's really good, believe me, they're going to make it. People
are dying for actors to be good. I remember when Meryl Streep first moved
to New York. I mean, forget it. It was five minutes. She'd hardly put her
toe on the sidewalk and people were talking about her.
New York Film-Makers on Film-making
edited by Tod Lippy
faber and faber
© copyright Tod Lippy, 2000