Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Is Emma Stone the new Julia Roberts?
Once upon a time, the biggest name in Hollywood was Julia Roberts. She was in almost every movie in the 1990's, on every magazine cover, she was tabloid fodder, commanded top salary and adored by fans the world over. But we all know that in Hollywood, age isn't kind to women. Men, unfair as it is, in Hollywood, don't have to suffer as much with ageism as their female acting counterparts. Hollywood is fickle, but so is fan adoration.
Julia Roberts has an oscar, and commanded the silver screen for the better part of a decade, but as a mother to three young children, acting has taken a back seat. And in that time, many younger and talented actresses have taken up the gauntlet. Emma Stone stands out in that group (Carey Mulligan is a talent to be reckoned with as well). I suppose the comparison can come down to hair colour? I told you Hollywood is fickle. Mind you, both Roberts and Stone aren't natural red heads, but the colour suits them well.
They both started off as supporting actors, and eventually took to being the lead. Roberts did that a bit quicker with the breakout hit, Pretty Woman, and Stone has done that with the film, Easy A. And they pretty much did it around the same age, 22. What was I doing at 22? Trying to write a proper paragraph for my English paper. I'm still trying to write properly. Both of those films were turning points for their careers. Roberts could star in anything, some failed (Mary Reilly) and others were huge successes (Notting Hill, My Best Friend's Wedding). Stone has a string of films coming out in the next year. She plays the romantic interest opposite Ryan Gosling (hubba, hubba) in Crazy, Stupid, Love and she's the lead in the best selling novel turned film,, The Help, and, of course, the revamped, Spiderman movie.
Roberts has yet to star in a superhero action film, and I doubt that's in the cards for her now. Smart move on her part. Playing the romantic lead in a superhero movie is a boring choice for an actor. It gives them major exposure, but the role tends to lack real range (ie. Kirsten Dunst and Katie Holmes). Hopefully, Stone will make challenging choices as an actor in order to sustain longevity because no matter what one thinks of Roberts, she is standing the test of time, even if people don't go to her movies in droves like before. Because for every Larry Crowne, there's an Eat, Pray, Love. She has the ability to bounce back at her own leisure.
Hopefully, with the onslaught of Spiderman, Stone can keep the tabloid fodder to a minimum, and make smart choices. Hollywood takes about having "it" more so with female actors than with males. But that "it" factor can vanish as quickly as it comes (ie. Gretchen Moll, Lindsay Lohan). Stone, so far, has made the right career choices, and if she continues to pick the right screenplays, and directors and costars, she can be around for a long time. Ultimately, the goal isn't to have a career like Julia Roberts, it's to have a career like Meryl Streep, or Helen Mirren, even Roberts would agree to that.