Renée Zellweger in Judy
A full-body transformation! Look at her spine, neck, shoulders, voice, face, and a core character attitude. These are all different from Renee’s default way of being. What a remarkable transformation.
Brad Pitt in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood & Laura Dern in A Marriage Story
I don’t see full-body transformations here. These are performances that are strong throughout, and that hinge on the characters’ core attitudes.
The Cast of Knives Out
Rian Johnson on the actors: “Getting the caliber of actors we were able to get, you know, I think they were able to take the characters much bigger than they maybe even read on the page. And because it takes a really good actor to give, like, a huge performance like that and still have it not tip over into it feeling just like a joke, to have it still feel like it has its feet on the ground, or at least one foot on the ground at all times. And so, I think the cast that we got allowed us to play it a little broader than it maybe even read on the page and still have the movie tick.” (From the 3rd & Fairfax podcast episode 179, starting at the 34:44 mark. Emphasis mine.)
In other words, to be big and good requires being a better actor than to be medium and good.
(P.S. Also watch Rian talk about the big, good performances in this SAG-AFTRA Foundation Q&A.)
The Cast of Parasite
I thought they were a great ensemble. Voted for them for the SAG Awards. Juicy acting throughout.
Go Get ’Em!
Be bold, fellow actors. Be big and juicy. Train well and be “huge” if you can!