Friday, May 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Cate Blanchett

Generally speaking, the actors with the greatest chameleonic abilities tend to be quite plain - slip them under a wig, paint their face, and with the adoption of some body language and a bit of voice coaching you can watch them disappear... How then to explain the success of Cate Blanchett? Not only is hers a light so bright it wouldn't fit under the biggest bushel, but the sheer effort it would take to plain her down would quickly deplete even a Hollywood-sized CGI budget.

Photobucket Her first big film role was in Paradise Road, Bruce Beresford's 1997 shot-in-Australia costumer about the inmates of a women's prison in Sumatra during World War II - opposite the likes of Glenn Close and Frances McDormand; the following year she tackled a quite different role, playing a young Elizabeth I in Shekhar Kapur's fact-challenged albeit emotionally accurate Elizabeth.

Ever since then she's moved from strength to strength, racking up accolades and awards for performances as diverse as The Talented Mr. Ripley, the epic trilogy of The Lord of the Rings, and The Shipping News; along the way she's tackled roles such as Elizabeth I at mid-life, Katharine Hepburn in Martin Scorsese's The Aviator, and playing Dame Judi Dench's lust-interest in Notes on a Scandal. She even played the villainous Irina Spalko in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull - as expected - to the hilt!

One of Australia's brightest stars - in a vibrant constellation which includes Russell Crowe, Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman, Toni Collette, Guy Pearce, and the late Heath Ledger among many others - offscreen Blanchett has used her fame to increase the profile of the Australian theatre, where her roots as an actor are; along with her husband Andrew Upton she became the co-artistic director of the Sydney Theatre Company in January 2008 shortly before the birth of her third son Iggy.
share on: facebook

No comments: