Sometimes the most inspiring characters are the ones who change the most, improving themselves through hard work, training and sheer determination. They end up heroes, but they didn’t start out that way. Here are our very favorite outcast transformations from the small and big screens — inlcuding Peggy Olson on “Mad Men” and Neville Longbottom on “Harry Potter.”
Few sci-fi classics scare the pants off us as much as Alien. And none of them have Ellen Ripley, a kickass heroine who remains one of the greatest characters ever. But since it’s always fun to mess with the classics, what follows are ideas that could’ve, would’ve, maybe should’ve been in the Alien films.
The story is fantastical, the characters indelible and the dialogue–well, let’s just say that it’s inconceivable that we could ever forget some of these lines. Its stars have gone on to win Emmys, make movies and award-winning TV series, but none of them have ever forgotten the hilarity and delight of “The Princess Bride”–and neither have we. It’s hard to whittle down so many great quotes to just 10, but these are the moments that stick with us.
We grow attached to TV characters. It just happens. Especially when they’re on a show we love—even when we hate them, it’s damn hard to say goodbye. So we’re letting ourselves indulge in a little “what if” therapy with our top characters we’d bring back from the dead.
Some are so good, they’ll do anything to help their kids succeed–but you’d better not break the rules. Some are so, so bad, you really don’t want to cross them. These high school teachers and principals from movies are no joke, even though we may like to laugh at them.
Some teachers from movies and TV are too cool for school–in fact, they’re so cool, we wish these amazing mentors and role models would hop right off the screen and teach us a thing or two.
The best drama series on TV defy easy categorizations — they’re procedurals with deeply nuanced characters, supernatural thrillers with political ramifications, period pieces impeccably dressed. Some of them invented a whole new way of thinking about television, paving the way for future classics. Others, well, they’re just one-of-a-kind.
J. Smith-Cameron–who plays Daniel’s mother, Janet Talbot, on RECTIFY–knows a thing about being a mom. And not just onscreen. Here she shares her insights about Janet’s outfits, her mothering style and her own signature dish (hint: It’s not pecan pie).
Q: Janet always seems on the verge of breaking down or bursting into tears. How do you maintain that kind of emotional tension?
A: That’s one of the challenges of the part. She does put a lot of energy into keeping it in, keeping that wall up, yet maintaining some kind of grace. She’s got a lump in her throat at all times; it’s her coping mechanism. This show is an actor’s dream–the man who created it, Ray McKinnon, is an actor as well–and that’s definitely written into the part.
Q: She has these very put-together outfits, and she often seems to be clutching her purse. Do those physical details help define the character for you?
Extraordinary British actor Janet McTeer has long been a favorite among those in the know. Statuesque and fiercely charismatic, she is the thinking man’s (and woman’s) sex symbol. In honor of her thrilling, new SundanceTV series, THE HONORABLE WOMAN, here are her top 5 movies.
Bullies, bitches and bad guys take note: When you try to pull a fast one on some girls, you’d better get ready for what’s to come. They may be young, they may seem sweet, but when push comes to shove, they will shove you right back. Here are 10 movies where girls get even.
Jake Austin Walker, who plays Daniel’s spunky, sympathetic younger half-brother Jared Talbot, talks about the family dynamics on the show (and behind the scenes), his own experience with bullying and when we can hear his next single (he’s really good!).
Q: Jared’s fascination with his half-brother’s case is touching, but it also freaks out Daniel (Aden Young). Did you really have a file of information about the case that you studied?
A: Oh, yeah–on the day that Aden shot that scene, they asked me about the folder and what I wanted in it; it’s real. Jared researched it, like a comic book or a movie he just can’t get enough of. Personally I think he raided the basement of their house and got all the old newspaper clippings from the case that his mother had hidden to try to put the bad memories away.
Q: Does having siblings in real life help you tap into the dynamics with your half-siblings on Rectify?
By the time this Belfast-born actor won the hearts of American audiences in the Oscar-winning movie at the top of our list, he’d already been a staple on UK screens for nearly three decades. In honor of his thrilling, new SundanceTV series, THE HONORABLE WOMAN, here are his top 5 movies.
Thanks to her unique and compelling on-screen presence, Maggie Gyllenhaal can be quite the scene-stealer. In honor of her thrilling new SundanceTV limited run series, THE HONORABLE WOMAN, we’ve picked her top five movies. Which is your favorite?
Charming and forthright, J.D. Evermore is not much like his reticent RECTIFY character, Sheriff Carl Daggett. But he does have a lot of interesting things to say about family, whether or not he thinks Daniel’s guilty (and of what) and a scene with Arnold Schwarzenegger he’ll never forget.
Q: Between takes, does the cast ever discuss whether they think Daniel (Aden Young) is actually guilty or not and if so, of what exactly?
A: I can’t speak for all the cast, but yes, it’s been brought up a couple of times. Most of us think that he’s probably guilty of something, we just don’t know what. I keep going back and forth. With one script, I think my character thinks he’s guilty and the next I think he thinks he’s not.
Q: You’ve played lawmen on shows ranging from Treme to True Detective–and of course on RECTIFY. If you weren’t an actor, any chance you’d be a cop?
Brimming with sex, violence, political intrigue and shocking deaths, HBO’s Game of Thrones—based on the bestselling George R.R. Martin books—is one undeniably kickass series. And (bless his heart) it’s often the women who are the baddest of the bunch. Here are 10 of our favorite kick-ass women on television.
Of course you meant to see them in the local art-house theater when they were released. Maybe you even did—and have been thinking about them ever since. Well, you’re in luck! These stellar movies, all winners at Sundance Film Festivals past, are available streaming on Netflix right now.
It was a long (long, long) winter. Thankfully, that’s behind us now. Summer’s now just around the corner and with it, the most buzzed about movies from the 2014 Sundance Film Festival are now hitting the theaters. Here are our top eight picks to catch on the big screen.
Fans know and love her as Betty (Draper, then Francis) on <em>Mad Men,</em> but there's another side to the actress. If you haven't seen January Jones like this, do yourself a favor and check out some of her best dramatic characters.
1. Lou Ann Norton, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
This neo-Western, Tommy Lee Jones' directorial debut (he also stars), features Jones as the wife of a Border Patrol Agent (Barry Pepper) who shoots and kills a Mexican immigrant cowboy (Julio Cedillo). Rather than fess up, he tries to cover up his crime and is kidnapped for his troubles. Lou Ann, meanwhile, is fed up with him and their life in Texas and decides to leave it all behind and return home to Ohio.
There’s no denying Jon Hamm’s TV superstardom—Don Draper is one of the most indelible characters of our time, but the actor shines on the big screen as well. As Mad Men draws to a close, take a look at Hamm’s Top 5 movie roles—including one you can catch in theaters now.
It’s not like high school isn’t strange enough as it is. Add a little supernatural seasoning and you get TV shows and movies where high school gets downright spooky-weird, which makes for great angst-filled horror stories.
1. Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry Potter (2001-2011)
“Oh well, what’s life without a few dragons?”
It should come as no surprise that a school dedicated to the education of young witches and wizards would be filled with magical goings-on, including a whomping willow tree on the grounds (never mind an entire forbidden forest). But things got extra-strange when the Boy Who Lived enrolled. Basilisk in the basement? Check. Boggarts in the classroom? Oh yes. Centaurs, Dementors and ghosts? Of course. Even the climactic standoff, where numerous witches and wizards on both sides perished, is dubbed the Battle of Hogwarts.
Julianne Nicholson, who plays troubled mom Jean Jensen, tells us why she’s particularly honored to have been the first person cast on the show, the scene she found hardest to shoot from Season 1, and what she hopes to do next (hint: It’s funnier than you might think).
Q: You were the first person cast for the series. How did that come about?
A: I was sent the script and I just fell in love with it. I went in and met with [show producers] Aaron [Guzikowski] and Bridget [Carpenter] and had a chat about it. I just made it very clear that I loved the show and would love to be part of it. I was so excited to be the first person cast. so often they cast the men first and cast the women to match the dudes. It was a great honor that it happened this way.
Q: What were the challenges in playing such a mentally fragile character? How did you prepare for the role?
Masterful at portraying unusual characters, Australian actor Geoffrey Rush has been an artist, a revolutionary, a tailor and a pirate (among others); he’s been Russian, Israeli, French and British (among others). To top it off, many of these characters are based on real people, making it that much trickier to get them just so. Vote…
There’s no scandal as juicy as a sex scandal. And when political intrigue gets mixed in, well, that just ups the ante. Lest you think that political sex scandals are a modern invention, here’s a breakdown of movies — all based on true stories — over the last half century.
The Devils (1971)
Talk about sordid: Back in 1634, French Catholic priest Urbain Grandier (Oliver Reed) was burned at the stake in connection with a series of supposed demonic possessions. The powerful Cardinal Richelieu used the accusations of a twisted, sexually obsessed nun (Vanessa Redgrave) as fuel to pursue a political vendetta against Grandier. The movie, directed by Ken Russell and based on a book by Aldous Huxley, met harsh criticism in the U.S. and U.K., both of which gave it an X rating because of violence and explicit sex scenes (two words: nun orgy). It has since been embraced as a cult classic.
Based on the memoir of a former stripper, Blaze recounts the passionate love affair between Louisiana Governor Earl Long (Paul Newman) and his buxom babe Blaze Starr (Lolita Davidovich). They may have been an unlikely pair, but their connection held fast even when the governor’s rivals used their relationship against him when he advocated for black voting rights). Having a fling with a stripper is one thing; what really riled up his adversaries was when they moved in together.
Can’t wait for THE RED ROAD Season 2? Keep up with the stars through their upcoming big-screen projects in the meantime.
Jason Momoa (Phillip Kopus)
In addition to starring in and directing the recently released Road to Paloma (which also features wife Lisa Bonet), Momoa has two more movies slated for 2014: The action-horror coming-of-age movie Wolves (as in were-) helmed by screenwriter David Hayter (X-Men, X2 and Watchmen) for this summer; and Debug, a hackers-in-space thriller directed by Stargate: Atlantis costar David Hewlett.