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WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

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SueleenGay
Broadway Legend
joined:6/9/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 6/9/03

WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#0
Posted: 10/22/03 at 1:32am
I watched two movies this weekend. Both starred young actresses who became Broadway sensations in their first starring role and parlayed that fame onto the screen.

One won an Oscar; the other probably will not even garner an Emmy nomination.

In FUNNY GIRL it was apparent that Babs was, at twenty-something, a major talent. Not only vocally, but an actress to be watched. Not only watched, but you cannot take your eyes away from her.

In BEAUTIFUL GIRL, Missy gets by on her cute, perky persona. I admire her chutzpa, but where is the star quality that we expected for such a high profile debut?

And the songs, screenplay, directing…

It is, I know, not fair to compare these two, but I was really disturbed. My friends could not get through BEAUTIFUL GIRL, and when I turned FUNNY GIRL on last night they said, “Are you going to watch this?” But with in ten minutes, we were all glued to the screen.


It is a different world.
PEACE.
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Mr. Tuttle
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 5/17/03

re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#1
Posted: 10/22/03 at 1:56am
I don't immediately see what Streisand and Marissa have in common to be comparable.

But on the tv movie, I thought it was very simple and rather stupid. And will someone please take the keyboard away from Debbie Gibson. She should not write anymore music.
Ignorance is temporary. Stupidity last forever. Watch out BWW... HE'S BACK.
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iflitifloat
Broadway Legend
joined:10/10/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 10/10/03

re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#2
Posted: 10/22/03 at 7:20am
This is a response on the fly (I should be leaving for working rather that mulling over the dearth of superstars...oh, well) not a well thought out reply, That being said, I think that technology may have killed the superstar. We simply know too much about anyone...or at least CAN know with the click or two of a button. And layer that on top of all the tawdry expose' shows on cable and the Star and the whatever else is staring you in the face on line in the supermarket and there's no mystique anymore. There's rarely that pause in time where someone can seem bigger than life, even for a little while, before we know all the tedious human foibles that tarnish the image. OMG, I sound old. But still....

Not that I think that's really the point that Sueleen was making. But I do think it's part of it. Should someone truly special with superstar-quality talent come along, I just think that we'll all know so many details, true and untrue, about them that they'll become familiar and ordinary before they can glow.
Sueleen Gay: "Here you go, Bitch, now go make some fukcing lemonade." 10/28/10
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JohnPopa
Broadway Legend
joined:6/16/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 6/16/03

re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#3
Posted: 10/22/03 at 8:34am
So one Barbra Streisand invalidates the entire catalogue of actors and actresses? I mean, she was a bigger star than the people in her day, too.

Streisand's an exception, not a rule.
Gothampc
Broadway Legend
joined:5/20/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 5/20/03

re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#4
Posted: 10/22/03 at 8:47am
I believe that it is the material that is being produced. In order to be a superstar today, you don't have to have any acting talent. (cough)Arnold S.(cough).

The only superstars we see today are those in action films. Great talents such as Cate Blanchett are going unnoticed. Blanchett will only become a superstar when she shows her boobs in the movie "I Married James Bond while he was attacking the Russian space aliens in Iraq, Part III"

You will notice that great stars of yesterday never had to take off their clothes to be stars. It's because they had talent.
If anyone ever tells you that you put too much Parmesan cheese on your pasta, stop talking to them. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life.
sheekala
Broadway Star
joined:7/3/03
Broadway Star | Joined: 7/3/03

re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#5
Posted: 10/22/03 at 8:52am
An interesting discussion and one I was having with some pretty high placed casting directors the other night at dinner. There were laments all around the table saying, "We get no exciting actors anymore!"..."Everyone is the same, they come in for everything"...They sing all the same songs.."..So I said, well, why not branch out?, really get involved with open calls? Maybe you'll find the next Merman or Preston, their collective response was, "those people wouldn't be hired in this day and age", so there is where your superstars are...stuck in the bitter void of small "creative" minds. I am SERIOUS in considering forming my own agency, I have a few backers, please send your pics and rez to The Sheekala Collective.
You've got to spread joy up to the maximum Bring gloom down to the minimum Have faith or pandemonium's Liable to walk upon the scene
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SueleenGay
Broadway Legend
joined:6/9/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 6/9/03

re: re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#6
Posted: 10/22/03 at 9:39am
iflit, I have yet to see a True Hollywood Story or Biography on Marissa. I don't even think they have done Barbra's yet. I know next to nothing about MJW's life.

Sheekala, I hardly think Marissa is a cardboard cut out. She is unique and does stand out from the crowd of clones. But I think she is limited. It's all about the money. Cashing in on my 15 minutes to land that sit-com, make the big bucks before anyone gets wise.

What is Nia Vardalos doing these days, anyway?
PEACE.
WOSQ
Broadway Legend
joined:7/18/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 7/18/03

re: re: re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#7
Posted: 10/22/03 at 10:35am
Barbra had extraodiniarily good management from Day One. She also kept her eyes on the prize. She knew she wanted to be a movie star and methodically kept that goal in mind as she did records, nightclubs, exploded on Broadway, did several exceptional television specials that were indeed 'special', more records, a limited run in London, a concert tour including the Central Park concert that was later televised and then made the film of Funny Girl. (She also had a baby in there too.)

What was lacking was a whole lot of crap: no B movies, no commercials, no supporting roles and very limited tv exposure. And very few mistakes: one tv special was a dud, but everything else between late 1962 and 1968 turned golden.

In other words, she planned and she and manager Marty Erlichman were never surprised by the turns her career took because there were very few of them.

Barbra's instincts were pretty good too.

Career Planning for Superstars. Hmm... its a new seminar racket.

"If my life weren't funny, it would just be true. And that would be unacceptable." --Carrie Fisher
sheekala
Broadway Star
joined:7/3/03
Broadway Star | Joined: 7/3/03

re: re: re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#8
Posted: 10/22/03 at 10:53am
SueleenG your are right about MJW, but she was "right" for a very specific role in a very high-concept musical movie adaptation. And thankfully because of that show more "non-cookie cutter performers" will get a shot at doing a lead in a show. But it's not the normal process by a long shot. Case in point the vast number of potential Leo's who are seen look like Brad Pitt, HEY! wait a minute, Brad.... as Leo! We'll pack the house!!
You've got to spread joy up to the maximum Bring gloom down to the minimum Have faith or pandemonium's Liable to walk upon the scene
Broadway Star
joined:1/1/70
Broadway Star | Joined: 1/1/70
I recently went to Wil Wheaton's site who hasn't done much since Star Trek: The Next Generation (I think??) and he answered some questions regarding making the moving Stand By Me and he said how none of the young, child, teenage actors can even compare to what they use to have i.e. River Phoenix. And it's so true! I would never put on the same level Freddie Prince and River Phoenix.

"Where are the superstars??" :c(
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orion59
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joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 5/17/03

re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#10
Posted: 10/22/03 at 12:11pm
There are no real superstars anymore for anumber of reasons. We seem to value the look of the moment over talent for one thing. Also the actresses of today don't have the same sense of creating an image as they once had. Look at some of the legndary movie stars of the past. People like Rita Hayworth, Lana Turner, Sophia Loren (the list goes on and on) created an image of the classy, elegant movie star who was somehow above the average person. They always looked flawlessly beautiful when seen in public and they carried themselves with a certain aire. They were more than the common everyday person.

They also knew how to play up the very best they had on and off camera. Joan Crawford, know ing taht she was not an attractive woman but had talent, studied movie lighting and ensured that the lighting on her always made her look better than she actaully was. that it played down her rather sharp, harsh bone structure. Watch her movies and notice how the lighting is brighter arond her best feature, her eyes.

Other actresses, such as Rita Hayworth, learned how to dress to paly up their looks, and how to move in a way that gave the impression she floated just an inch above the ground rather tahn walked like the average person.

Of course, all of these woman had talent too but, tehy knew how to market themselves much in the way that Barbra did.

The Broadway stars of teh past were the same. they were people who knew how to make themselves appear special and above the ordinary and, most of all, were cast for their talent. It's very to sad to realize taht a Merman or perston would be waiting tables today instaed of being onstage
http://www.danperezgallery.com
sheekala
Broadway Star
joined:7/3/03
Broadway Star | Joined: 7/3/03

re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#11
Posted: 10/22/03 at 12:41pm
Please the way they "staff" wait people poor Ethel wouldn't even be "cast". Most of them look like Giselle Bundchen!
You've got to spread joy up to the maximum Bring gloom down to the minimum Have faith or pandemonium's Liable to walk upon the scene
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newyorkuniq
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joined:10/1/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 10/1/03

re: re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#12
Posted: 10/22/03 at 12:45pm
Well there is noooo comparison between Barbra and Marissa. Barbra is the best and was from the beginning. Marissa has a loong long way to go.
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PB ENT.
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joined:6/11/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 6/11/03

re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#13
Posted: 10/22/03 at 1:15pm
What a great topic! Many good views here!
Sueleen~ I've got an early demo recording of Babs. Very rough but talent was hiding there. Obviously some training brought her to life!

iflitiflit(?) ~ I agree mMedia has taken over, and too often that's not a good thing. Too much exposure of truth and shock rumors makes extraordinary people no different that you and I. We want our entertainers, though human, on a pedestool not an easy chair, like some of us.

Gothamp & Orion~ sadly those days of performers who were considered "masters of their craft" are being bombarded by too many creative minds(!?) who sculpt actors into a mold of what they think will sell and make money. Too often it's not working.
Just boot up the reverb or change the arrangements and they all sound great! Sad!

sheekala~ There are so many "superatar" talents walking from audition to audition only to come home empty. "Can't get arrested in NYC" is not as funny after 2 or 3 years, huh? Just chatted with a former Phantom who half-jokingly said "some one should open an ex-phantom farm and put us old guys, over 40!, out to pasture like the old race horses"! Not funny! That's why so many are out there "re-inventing" themselves to work! As long as the casting directors have this tunnel vision of selective talent...ya better get in before you hit 35 cause it's all downhill frome there.( well,almost). Start a new talent agency? We need to talk... LOL!
www.pbentertainmentinc.com BWW regional writer "Philadelphia/South Jersey"
Updated On: 10/22/03 at 01:15 PM
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Al Dente
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joined:7/22/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 7/22/03

re: re: re: re: WHERE ARE THE SUPERSTARS?

#14
Posted: 10/22/03 at 1:16pm
This is a wonderful thread and all so sad but true. However, I would never put Winokur on the same planet, let alone sentence as Streisand. Winokur got lucky that a role was tailor made to her specific *talents*. That's all. I honestly don't see any sort of longevity to her career.
sharon1
Broadway Star
joined:6/3/03
Broadway Star | Joined: 6/3/03
I, too, love this thread. Management, or marketing aside, I think real superstars are few and far between. There are probably some really talented men and women out there, but trying to buck the "system" is difficult. You can get crucified so easily. Producers can't afford to take risks. Performers a lot of the time can't or are not allowed to take risks. A new one will come along. They always do. Or maybe that is wishful thinking.
Broadway Star
joined:1/1/70
Broadway Star | Joined: 1/1/70
Perhaps the industry and the audience have changed so much that it doesn't produce the same enthrallment of entertainer as, say, 30-40 years ago. I mean, we do have amazing performers, but peoples' attention spans are so short these days, and we're inundated with so much, it's easy to become distracted. Is Andy Warhol's prediction about 15 minutes of fame coming true?
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Al Dente
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joined:7/22/03
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It's already come true Marissa. You only need to look at the music business for that. The people who last past 2 or more albums (and I'm being very generous) are few and far between. "Let's move on to the next thing, quick", seems to be the mantra these days. We can pretty much blame MTV for the attention span issues. Also, let's not forget that we are tragically, living in a day and age, where *fame* means ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. Anyone on a reality show, anyone who's slept with a *celebrtiy*, anyone at all really, can become famous overnight. It cheapens the entire concept. You used to have to have some special, discernable *talent* to become a star. It's not a part of the job requirement anymore. What a crime.
sharon1
Broadway Star
joined:6/3/03
Broadway Star | Joined: 6/3/03
No Superstars because we get caught up in celebritydom. There is a discernible difference. Anyone can become a celebrity for a short while or even for a long while. No everyone can become a superstar
Broadway Star
joined:1/1/70
Broadway Star | Joined: 1/1/70
Al Dente, you put it very well. We've become a nation of one-hit wonders, so to speak. It's quite sad to think that when people look back on these years, there won't be many individuals who stand out as having made a tremendous and important impact on audiences.

Okay, a time machine, please! No cable, no computers. 1973 all over again! (Don't you wish we could sometimes?)
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Al Dente
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joined:7/22/03
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Again, I'll mention the name, Jennifer Lopez... she's undoubtedly a superstar with not a shred of talent. I think Cameron Diaz is adorable to look at but VERY lite in the talent area. She's a 20 mill a pick "superstar". Just goes to show you.
sheekala
Broadway Star
joined:7/3/03
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I'm reading Phil Silvers autobiography at the moment for an upcoming project and I can barely get thru it as it's so sad because those amazing times on broadway and Hollywood are gone forever.It was such a different time in the city back then, you could rent an apartment for 45 bucks a week, there was no wildly political casting corporations, you brought your composite headshot to the stage manager and maybe you'd get a shot at singing for the show. There were so many theaters with so many shows. Ahhh, well at least some of the wonderful actors and musicians currently performing are trying to bring the romance back, head into Angus or Marlowes after a show and you can "almost" hear the sounds from Tin Pan Alley.
You've got to spread joy up to the maximum Bring gloom down to the minimum Have faith or pandemonium's Liable to walk upon the scene
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JohnPopa
Broadway Legend
joined:6/16/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 6/16/03
People, look at history. In any era of entertainment a tiny handful of people stand the test of time while the rest fade into obscurity or ride one or two successes for a short time. It's hardly anything new, nor is the talent level of the top stars being debated as others are passed over for both fame and accolades. Does anyone honestly think John wayne was the finest actor of his generation? Of course not, he was just the most famous and made the most lasting impression. There were hundreds of guys making westerns and starring in serials alongside him, many of whom were better performers. There were plenty of people on Broadway at the same time as Streisand in 'Funny Girl' who never got beyond utter obscurity. Were they less talented? Was the audience just stupid and conditioned by the media of their time? It's the same story, repeated over and over. We aren't the first generation to have stars.
sheekala
Broadway Star
joined:7/3/03
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JohnPopa it's true, I just think in the last few years the importance of looks and six pack abs have really taken a toll. But this isn't a new story at all. That's why I love Nathan Lane so very much as he embodies so much of the old school performer.
You've got to spread joy up to the maximum Bring gloom down to the minimum Have faith or pandemonium's Liable to walk upon the scene
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robbiej
Broadway Legend
joined:5/20/03
Broadway Legend | Joined: 5/20/03
Speaking as a young(er) (29) actor who not only cherishes the 'old school' style of performing, but indeed aims for it, I can tell you it's VERY hard trying to find representation in this business. Not to toot the horn, but since coming to NY, I've gotten some terrific reviews (in major and minor papers), a couple of small-time awards and yet I watch others I know with perfect bodies and cute faces get all the work. It's very discouraging.

Welcome to my pity party, everyone!

I guess my point it, so many people are being cast on Broadway who are just bland enough as to be able to use them in a myriad of projects. Add to that the fact that serious musicals written for serious singing actors are practically non-existent and you've got a major problem. I'm not so sure how much I want to be on Broadway (other than the paycheck and the ability to get your foot in the door for TV and film). It's sad.
"I'm so looking forward to a time when all the Reagan Democrats are dead."