Wednesday, May 7, 2008

One Actor to Rule Them All

Haki and I like to have breakfast at a small bakery in South Dunedin now and then. He gets the French toast and bacon, I get the scrambled eggs and hash browns. For some reason, while there, we discuss the hypothetical.

Last visit, Haki asked, “How long do you think we could survive in here on the food and drink inside alone?” This led to a lengthy discussion.

Today, I asked, “If we lived in a mad dictatorship where only one actor was allowed to star in all our film and television – because the government approves of him for whatever reason, and have screened him and he’s 'passed' according to their weird censorship laws – who would you want it to be…that you watched, day in, day out?” I then qualified this scenario by saying extras are permitted, but they have a limit of speaking lines, and no one ever reappears, because they only want one “star”.

In retrospect, I think it is more likely a psychopathic fan would lock you in a cell and order you to only watch things with a particular actor in them, but that is by the by…we went with the dictatorship.

We both went quiet for a while.

We both submit Will Smith as our first choice. Which is odd; I wouldn’t say he “floats my boat” (or Haki’s) in any special way…but I really couldn’t think of anyone I’d rather stake my entertainment happiness on…in terms of all-round performer. For any other actor I felt I would have to sacrifice a genre.

Tom Cruise was presented as an option, but he was shelved due to lack of quality comedy. Sliding around in tighty-whities is not enough. Also, we felt our fictitious dictatorship would embrace a black man before a Scientologist. Dictators are harsh.

Haki threw Tom Hanks out there, but then retracted it due to lack of interest in any action films he would star in.

I highlighted Robin Williams' shift of late to thrillers, and suggested perhaps he could still whip out all those characters and voices of his to add colour to our networks.

It was at this point that I noted if we picked someone old, then he would die and we would get someone new sooner. This led me to Anthony Hopkins. But then, the hope of reliable romance and action waned with that idea. Perhaps the films could be largely flashbacks, with extras playing out scenes with little dialogue?

We also agreed a female lead couldn’t pull this media saturation off. Sorry actresses (an apparently redundant word, by the way folks).

Mariah, my sister, is a fan of Hugh Jackman. Donning those tights after making Marvel movies and romances opposite the woman with scarecrow hair (for you Sherry), has definitely shown us he’s multi-faceted. I think he should be considered. I think the dictators would like him more than Will.

Johnny Depp has made good choices and displayed a broad range, and I really love to watch him…but he seems to go for niche roles, and what we need in our hum-drum lives is not eclectic and unusual…it is diverse yet ordinary.

I think Sean Penn is a better actor. I think Matt Damon has potential, but we would need to see more of his romantic side before we could enlist him as our screen slave. I think Robert De Niro is compelling.

But I still pick Will.

Good going buddy, you are legend in my imagined, repressive world. For that, you get a link.

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