kottke.org posts about Cate Blanchett

Robin Hood trailerDec 15 2009

Robin Hood with Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett, directed by Ridley Scott? I'll take five.

God, I love Cate BlanchettNov 16 2009

Cate Blanchett

Photo by Annie Leibovitz for Vogue, December 2009. (via djacobs)

Trailer for The Curious Case of Benjamin ButtonJun 18 2008

Trailer for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. David Fincher, Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, F. Scott Fitzgerald. Pitt's character starts off as an old man and ages backwards. Is it possible to buy tickets for this *right now*? BTW, the full text of the Fitzgerald short story on which the film is based is available online.

The Oscar nominations are out. Surprises includeJan 22 2008

The Oscar nominations are out. Surprises include Juno for Best Picture and Cate Blanchett for Best Actress for Elizabeth: The Golden Age, a movie that received mixed reviews at best. And I'm thinking that Daniel Day-Lewis is pretty much a lock for Best Actor, no?

Update: Most of the Oscar nominated animated shorts are available online.

Second trailer for the could-be-amazing I'm NotOct 18 2007

Second trailer for the could-be-amazing I'm Not There, a movie about Bob Dylan, starring Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Cate Blanchett, and three other actors as Bob Dylan. Not very related: would any of Christian Bale's characters be any good in bed?

Cate Blanchett's relaxed concentrationFeb 13 2007

One of my favorite actresses is Cate Blanchett, but I don't know much about her. A profile of Blanchett from last week's New Yorker (not online) filled in the blanks nicely:

What Blanchett hides from her directors and her audience she also hides from herself. "I do like to preserve the mystique of the thing, for myself as much as anyone else," she has said. Over the years, she has repeatedly dodged autobiographical questions by claiming, "I've sort of forgotten my childhood." These ellipses in conversation help Blanchett to trick herself out of self-consciousness. "I'm not interested in the character I am in myself," she told James Lipton on the television series "Inside the Actors Studio." "Any connection I have to my characters will be subliminal and subconscious."

Her approach to acting sounds similar to the idea of relaxed concentration in sports, like the practicing of free throw shooting until you can do it automatically without having to focus on shooting and can instead just focus on being focused while shooting. The author of Blanchett's profile, John Lahr, wrote a piece on stage fright for the magazine a few months ago that deals with the same theme. British actor and comedian Stephen Fry describes how he seized up after reading a review of a performance in the Financial Times:

The impact of the review was, Fry says, "phenomenal." He describes the sense of acute self-consciousness and loss of confidence that followed as "stage dread," a sort of "paradigm shift." He says, "It's not 'Look at me - I'm flying.' It's 'Look at me - I might fall.' It would be like playing a game of chess where you're constantly regretting the moves you've already played rather than looking at the ones you're going to play." Fry could not mobilize his defenses; unable to shore himself up, he took himself away.

To me, the battle with the self is one of the most interesting aspects of watching performance, whether it's sports, ballet, live music, movies, or someone giving a talk at a conference.

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