Character actors/actresses, do you have favorites, do you admire the skill and

@nowment (1758)
United States
April 9, 2007 12:19pm CST
talent it takes to portray so many different roles and to do so with out ever becoming the leading man/woman? Emeraldisle has a great post about Gary Oldman's skill and talent, this got me to thinking about other talented actors and actresses who can change / transform themselves for the roles/ characters they are portraying. Just wondering what are you opinions of such actors/actresses I think they enhance a movie and usually make the movie more of what it is than even the stars. Some favorite examples are of course Gary Oldman, and his many roles. Johnny Depp, who was on his way to being the pretty boy of the time, and choose instead to get away from becoming the new up and coming hot actor, to do more character roles, and his skill proved he made the right choice in such roles as Benny and June, Sleepy Hollow, Pirates of the Carribean, From Hell, Nick of Time. It was odd I never thought of myself as a Johnny Depp fan then I realized how many of his movies I really enjoyed, how many different characters he portrayed. Or Linda Hunt who has so much talent and should be doing so much more take her role in The Year of Living Dangerously, or Silverado, or Kindergarden Cop. Rene Auberjunois, whether it is the uptight Clayton Endicott the third from Benson, the law and order strict Odo in Star Trek Deep Space Nine, Father Mulkahey in the original movie MASH, or the voices he creates in Disney films he has so many characters he has portrayed and created and most people have no idea who he is. Steve Buscemi, Roscoe Lee Brown, Art Carney, John De Lancie, Selma Diamond, Tony Goldwyn, Grahme Greene, Madeline Kahn and so many more, anyone have a favorite?
5 people like this
13 responses
@mitchb (256)
• United States
9 Apr 07
I've always been a huge fan of Steve Buscemi. It seems like whatever he is in, no matter how small the part, you end up fixated on his character. I think he does much better when he is not the lead and does not have to worry about carrying the film. When he comes on screen you know something really cool or funny is going to happen.
2 people like this
@mitchb (256)
• United States
10 Apr 07
His character Mr. Pink in Reservoir Dogs explaining why he doesn't tip has to be tops on my list.
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@nowment (1758)
• United States
10 Apr 07
He made that movie. It had some good elements but for me Steve Buscemi ties it together.
@cynddvs (2950)
• United States
9 Apr 07
I think Anthony Hopkins is amazing. He has played so many great roles and I can't wait to see his new movie. Another one I really like is Robin Williams. I just watched What Dreams May Come Last Night. I forgot what an amazing movie that was until I saw it again. I also really like Kevin Spacey. He plays a really good villan but he also can make your heart melt in movies like Pay It Foward.
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@emeraldisle (13158)
• United States
10 Apr 07
I'm glad my discussion inspired you to post this because this is an interesting discussion. Well I won't mention Gary Oldman but I think Rene Auberjunois is a phenomonal actor. I forgot that he was in the original M*A*S*H movie. I've seen him in so many movies and tv shows and enjoyed them in all. I loved him in the movie "My Best Friend Is A Vampire". If you haven't seen it I would recommend it. Very comedic view on vampires. He was great as Odo and did you know he was in both Star Trek 5 and 6 movies? In the one he played a normal human and in the 6 he played Colonel West. He really does get around. Steve Buscemi is another one that is missed out on. He is in so many movies but he does play the side characater and is over looked. I'm sure many are looking at the name and wondering who it is but if they saw him they'd know him. I loved his character Rock Hound in Armeggeddon and also his character in Con Air. He's in a lot of movies and he's always good. Ok I could go on because you have mentioned a few others there that I really like. Those two though are ones I really enjoy currently.
@emeraldisle (13158)
• United States
10 Apr 07
I forgot two that I really like. One is Roddy Mcdowell. He was a fantastic character actor. One of his best roles in my opinion was on Fantasy Island when he played the Devil. The other is Tim Curry. He plays such a variety of characters but is always so good. From Rooser in Annie to Pennywise in Stephen King's IT or even the Second Best Terrorist in McHale's Navy he always does a fantastic job. I've liked him in everything I've seen him in.
1 person likes this
@nowment (1758)
• United States
10 Apr 07
Yes, and when he did the butler in Clue, I enjoyed that movie, because it was entirely cast with characters rather than stars. Though some have become well known, It was the character actor's showcase movie. When Tim Curry stood there and so seriously said "I Buttle" I still smile when I remember that. Yes I remember Roddy McDowel, and he could do anything from sweetly innocent, to evil. Most know of him from Planet of the Apes, but I enjoyed so many of the films and tv shows he performed in. An example of how talent can take someone from child actor to a good career. Not many can do that. I enjoyed him as Octavian - Cesar Augustus, in Cleopatra.
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@emeraldisle (13158)
• United States
14 Apr 07
Roddy McDowell played so many things and you are right to go from child star to an adult one shows how great he was. Did you know when he did Planet of the Apes he would sometimes drive home in full make up in a convertable no less? Could you imagine drivnig down the road and seeing that? Clue was fantastic. I loved it. I watch it a lot but Tim Curry could steal a scene with just a line. I've seen him in a lot of things and he's always top notch but that movie is definitly one of my favorites with him. The other is Stephen King's IT.
@feralwoman (2199)
• Australia
11 Apr 07
My favourite character actor would have to be Anthony Hopkins. He is soo good and diverse. He played the creepy Hannibal Lecter in Silence of the Lambs and then did a complete turnaround in The Fastest Indian. Another one would have to be Denholm Elliot - he cropped up all over the place in many wonderful films, sadly he has now passed on. I think Billy Connolly is an extremely good actor too, and of course Judy Dench would have to be right up there. Those two were so good in Mrs Brown. Alan Rickman, Leonardo diCaprio, Dennis Hopper just to name a few. Watching films is a hobby of mine and I just love it when an actor does a really good job - it just makes the film for me! LOL Great discussion Nowment!
@nowment (1758)
• United States
11 Apr 07
You have named some greats. I love Dennis Hopper, I mean look at the drunk he played in Hoosiers, then the villian in Speed. A real talent. Yes I agree with Anthony Hopkins and several of those you mentioned I also like to watch movies, and over the years have gotten way to many videos collected. But then I start talking about something like this, and well I can't believe I forgot all about Denholm Elliot.
@emskoneko (806)
• United States
10 Apr 07
You names some great actors and actresses that I greatly admire for their talent in taking almost any role. It's shameful how some people would rather admire someone who acts like a stupid girl just to have a good show and make people laugh at her instead of great actors who win oscars. I won't say her name since she recently passed away (that info probably makes her obvious).
1 person likes this
@nowment (1758)
• United States
10 Apr 07
Yes the info does give me a good idea as to whom you mean. And it is unfortunate that some of the great character actors never won oscars for their talents. Actually there is a site that lists a host of actors or actresses that may be known for the role they play, but are not really otherwise known http://www.what-a-character.com/
• Philippines
10 Apr 07
Most of my favorite actors are those who played varied roles like Johny Depp actually i just finished watching Edward Schissorhands and Charlie and the chocolate factory again.. for I can count for how many times. I just love the way he portrays the roles of different characters with such very different kinds..not just dramas, comedy or horror. Another actor I love is Anthony Hopkins, just by his voice I can pinpoint that its him. I love this voice and the way he portrays psychopathic roles. Another is Leonardo De carpio. Well I never love him in Titanic for I haven't seen that movie. But the rest of his movies are really great even the old ones where he is still a child.
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@nowment (1758)
• United States
10 Apr 07
There are just to many great movies with Anthony Hopkins to mention. And Johnny Depp has done so many good films, and transforms himself it seems each time.
@raijin (10380)
• Philippines
10 Apr 07
I think Jean Reno should be included on this too, as I have seen him play many great roles. In which most of the times he plays as a villain, or in supporting roles. I have seen him lately on "The Da Vinci Code", as french cop Bezu Fache, in "Ronin", "MI:1", and many more great movies. There's also Oded Fehr, who played Antoine in Rob Schneider's "Deuce Bigalow, Male Gigolo", as Carlos in Resident Evil: Apocalypse and as Ardeth Bey in "The Mummy1 and 2". The last one would be Liev Schreiber, who is also a great character actor. He's included in films such as "Kate and Leopold", "The Sum of All Fears", "RKO 281", "The Manchurian Candidate" and "Jakob the LIar". These three are some of my best chosen character actors, in which they should be given some good exposures, or maybe a good break to prove their being calibered actors.
@nowment (1758)
• United States
10 Apr 07
To me there is so much talent in those "supporting" roles that with out them the films they are in would just flob. I remember Jean Reno, in Da Vinci Code, I also like his performance in Godzilla, while the movie wasn't that great the best scenes had him in it. If you didn't see watch him when they are going through the check point, it is funny. And he does the accent really well.
• United States
9 Apr 07
I get mesmerized when I see actors play mentally challenged characters. I think that's such a hard role to play, and to do so convincingly. The people that immediately rist to mind are the guy from SlingBlade (awesome movie and acting), Sean Penn (I can't remember the name of that movie), and Leonardo DiCaprio in What's Eating Gilbert Grape (GREAT movie).
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@nowment (1758)
• United States
9 Apr 07
Most popular along those lines would be Dustin Hoffman's performance in Rain Man. Slingblade wasn't that Billy Bob Thorton? I remember Sean Penn performance in I Am Sam, it was very strong. And yes both Johnny Depp and Leonard DiCaprio were great in What's Eating Gilbert Grape, Depp for the role of the family caretaker, and DiCaprio for the performance of the challenged Arnie, he had such an innocent look about him when he played that character.
@theponch (198)
• United States
9 Apr 07
Yes, it takes more talent than any of us realizes. That is why they are seen in many movies, are paid lots of money, get so much publicity, and live in really nice houses. Julia Roberts has been a favorite of mine for a long time. I liked Mystic Pizza, Pretty Woman, Erin Brachavich, and a whole lot more. She has portrayed many roles I can relate to; that's another reason she's so popular.
@jhongz (42)
• Philippines
10 Apr 07
for me Lawrence Fishbourne and Tom Cruise. I'm an all action type of guy. Matrix and Mission Impossible
@nowment (1758)
• United States
10 Apr 07
They are good leading actors, though not character actors. Thanks for sharing, but are there any character actors whose talenst you admire?
@kteja_86 (293)
• India
10 Apr 07
My favourite actor in hollywood is Nicholas Cage..I dont like an actor if he's handsome or cute,i begin to like him if i think he's got the correct characterization for that particular role,and if he's done justice to it..and i admire actors who take on different roles too...Nicholas cage is one such,ive seen him in many many roles...Conair,Face off,Gone in 60 seconds,Ghost rider,etc,etc....these r some of my favourites....an awesome actor,truly!
@nowment (1758)
• United States
10 Apr 07
I don't deny that he is a good actor leading man, but I was thinking more along the lines of the character actors, rather than those who are the stars.
@20031969 (934)
• India
20 Apr 07
my fav. actor is sanjeev kumar and suchitra sen. thanks.
• Philippines
20 Apr 07
My favorite actor, not really of all time, because I usually love a lot of actor, (^^,LOL) is Johnny Depp. Especially in the pirates of the Carribeans. I love his role there. And the way he acted and portrayed it with a funny yet witty twist. I agree with the saying, if Johnny Depp, portrayed Captain Jack Sparrow in a different way, the pirates of the carribean wouldn't be a blast. So I'm looking forward for the part 3. (^^,) For actresses, I like Drew Barrymore, because she is very versatile too, and Jodie foster. I love most of their movie. (^^,)