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David Poland

By David Poland


47-year old industryite writes: “At Monkey Bar for Sandy Bullock party– bringing median age down about 30 years.”
Add, Tues, 11:50a – Translation – A Sandy Bullock party at the Monkey Bar means Oscar gladhanding. Oscar gladhanding, even more in NY than LA, means older people.

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17 Responses to “HAH!”

  1. berg says:

    saw Valentine’s Day just now, I wanted to throw up in my mouth a few times during the screening but the little LexG on my left shoulder kept whispering in my ear “It’s charming.”

  2. LexG says:

    Excuse my stupidity, but I honestly don’t understand this post by DP. There’s a bash for Bullock somewhere, and her fans are all old timers? Her peers? Monkey Bar is an old people venue?
    On the subject of Bullock… didn’t she seem, oh, NICER and more charming and sweet-natured back in the day? In the Speed, Wrestling Ernest Hemingway, Demo Man, The Net era, she was this gawky, goofy, America’s Sweetheart type everyone loved. I have NOTHING against her and never did — if anything, would say she’s sort of historically underestimated.
    But how come she seems kind of mean or bossy or entitled now? Maybe it’s an America’s Sweetheart kind of thing… early Julia Roberts had a kind of everywomen, clunky, “Who, me?” modesty, and now when she blowses into frame (see the VD trailer) with that CACKLING HORRID HORSE LAUGH, it has this forced air of false joviality, like we should be bowing on general principle because The Grand Dame dareth appear.
    I blame is on that Jesse James guy… Bullock’s much more serious and less loose than back in the day.

  3. Foamy Squirrel says:

    I’m assuming it’s a reference to the “Blind Side” crowd.
    “I blame is on that Jesse James guy… Bullock’s much more serious and less loose than back in the day.”
    I find that moderately amusing – he used to date pornstars, and some of his staff offered to go out on “dates” (with suitable winkwink connotations) with anyone who provided information regarding their lost dog a week or two ago.

  4. jesse says:

    Lex, that’s a really interesting point about Bullock and Roberts. That’s the thing about being a girl-next-door type who becomes super-famous and beloved… as you gain confidence (well, not that these movie stars were lacking confidence as twentysomethings — but maybe as the confidence becomes more warranted and less faux-spunky), the no-nonsense regular-gal thing seems a little more, yeah, bossy or even a tiny bit strident. Bullock seems really into the I’m-giving-it-to-ya-straight plain-folks thing that you see in someone like Sarah Palin. I mean, I assume Bullock is a lot smarter and more interesting than Palin, but I think it’s that quality used for less horrible means, even though it seems a little more forced and a little less “charming” as she ages.
    But people seem to be really loving that about Bullock, considering it sort of a gawky-girl-made-good type of story. I’m not sure if the same has happened with Roberts, who has a similar thing going on. I tend not to like her much, and weirdly one of her performances I most enjoy is in Hook — not because she’s particularly great in it, but because her gawkiness and dorkiness seems genuine and unforced.
    I feel like Erin Brockovich was kind of a turning point, where her regular-gal thing got sold hard and turned sort of righteous. She won the Oscar for it, and since then, she’s had a kind of a colder, more uppity vibe. It’s used effectively in a movie like Duplicity, but in those two Ocean’s movies she comes off as a bit of a pill, and she was pretty much the only thing I disliked in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.
    And Lex, you’re dead-on about the forced mirth of her laugh; it’s become like Eddie Murphy’s, only you can still believe Murphy might be personally amused about something (at least occasionally). With Roberts, her laugh seems to say ENJOY ME HAVING A GOOD TIME! It brings back memories of her presenting Denzel with Best Actor and prefacing it with “I love my life!” — I know it was intended as an expression of happiness that her buddy won an award, but it came off a little like, again, aren’t you happy to see me so happy?!

  5. You want Roberts against type, rent Mary Reilly. She’s in every frame of the picture and doesn’t smile, or laugh, or do any of her ‘tricks’ once, yet she still holds her own against Malkovich. I’ve always felt that Roberts’s romantic comedy persona was mean, selfish, entitled, and generally unpleasant. It’s her ‘against type’ work that show her in a much better light (Mary Reilly, Something To Talk About, Hook, etc).
    Similar to Harrison Ford’s battering over The Mosquito Coast, I think Julia Roberts took such a hit for Mary Reilly and Hook (among others) and was so overpraised for My Best Friend’s Wedding that she vowed to never stray from her ‘movie star persona’ ever again. As for the Oceans films, I blame Soderbergh. I read at the time of the first film’s release that he wanted to play the romance as serious as possible. Great, but he has Roberts play it so emotionally harsh, that you end up pitying Roberts by the end of the picture when Garcia dumps her for money.

  6. Cadavra says:

    My favorite description of Roberts’ performance in MARY REILLY: “Ten accents, one expression.”
    And anyone who thinks Bullock isn’t the same, smart goofy gal she always was: did you see her last night on Letterman? If that’s an act, she deserves an Emmy as well as an Oscar.

  7. Dr Wally says:

    Mid-90’s era Bullock was far more appealing than the current model, for sure. I blame the crappy movies she did with Marc Lawrence for the change. To my mind, Rachel Macadams is the most naturally likeable leading actress to come along since Bullock back then.

  8. yancyskancy says:

    I’m not sure I see this “new” Bullock. Even in her acceptance speeches, amid the de rigueur humility, she’s been funny and charming, if not gawky and goofy (she’s in her 40s now, after all). I think this perception you’re getting, Lex, may have more to do with her roles in THE PROPOSAL and THE BLIND SIDE–both against her usual type, and probably coloring public perception of her.
    I will say that the recent Entertainment Weekly story on her made her seem like a really controlled soccer-mom type, nothing like the freewheeling bachelor-gal Sandy of old. So there’s that.
    The mother of her stepkids is Janine Lindemulder, right? So weird.

  9. Joe Leydon says:

    You know, back in the day: Fans didn’t want Mary Pickford to grow up, either.

  10. Foamy Squirrel says:

    *obligatory Joe-baiting*
    Who’s Mary Pickford?

  11. Joe Leydon says:

    Silly Squirrel: She was America’s Sweetheart. (Even though she was born in Canada.)

  12. storymark says:

    I think I saw her name in some collection of vintage movie posters or something…..

  13. jesse says:

    I don’t really see Julia Roberts as particularly “grown up” for the most part, though, Joe. To me, she comes off as more petulant and self-satisfied now than when she was younger… although she’s never been one of my favorite actors, so maybe that’s just a personal bias.

  14. Triple Option says:

    Sandra’s never left that girl next door image for me. Which has made it hard to enjoy her in a role like she played in Crash. I liked The Blind Side but again if she’d had to play tough too much I wouldn’t have bought it.
    She seems so branded to me. When I see a movie like “All About Steve,” I see a performance limited by prior success. She

  15. leahnz says:

    i like both sandra and julia; what a bunch of malcontents

  16. David Poland says:

    1. I vote for the “she’s a grown up” argument. Bullock is still well liked by her inner circle and does get goofy.
    2. Even though she is one of the very small group of nominees that I will not get for DP/30, I am still happy for her and believe she is who she seems to be. And someday, Stephen Huvane will give me a break.

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

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