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Does an actor's political views affect the way you see them in their roles?

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Does an actor's political views affect the way you see them in their roles?

Old 03-02-03, 06:41 PM
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Does an actor's political views affect the way you see them in their roles?

I don't want to make this into a political discussion, but with
some of the recent things things I've heard some stars say has
really turned me off to their movies. George Clooney comes to
mind. Since I've heard some of his remarks overseas, When I
see him in anything, alls I can think of are his political views.

Is there anyone else here that can't seperate an actors views
(political or otherwise) from the role they're playing?

Again, this is not a thread intended to debate political views, but
more to debate if its a good move for actors to make their views
public?

Thoughts?

Jason

Last edited by jasonbird; 03-02-03 at 06:45 PM.
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Old 03-02-03, 07:10 PM
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No problems here...but then again, I guess I don't pay much attention to what actors/actresses think about political events. When I initially read the first post in this thread, I thought of their religious views, such as John Travolta being a Scientologist (which never crossed my mind until he was in Battlefield Earth, which was based on a book by the scientology found, L Ron Hubbard...never saw it by the way), or Richard Gere being buddhist. These religious views/preferences have never really gotten in the way of enjoying (or hating) an actor's performance in movies.
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Old 03-02-03, 07:10 PM
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This topic (or a variation of it) has come up before. But that's OK because, like "overrated movie" threads, the subject is always *interesting*!

I voted for "Keep it to yourself!" Part of this is because I'm conservative, and I get real annoyed with all these holier-than-thou liberals routinely denouncing everything I stand for. But I'd like to think that, even if the prevailing Hollywood opinion was in line with mine, I'd still be consistent enough to get somewhat fed up with the nonstop activism.

Another thing that bugs me is that I'm always suspicious of majority opinions. For instance, if somebody started a "favorite color" thread and 100 people replied and all of them voted for Blue, you have to wonder: Would each individual who voted for blue *still* have voted for blue, if the other 99 did not? Similarly, I can't help but think that at least some of the ultra-vocal Hollywood lefties have adopted their positions at least in part because they wanna conform to what's hip, trendy, and fashionable. If you're at a cocktail party and the topic is "Reagan is dumb," it's a lot easier to say "He sure is!" than to say "Would Mondale, the guy who won exactly one state, have been better?"

Of course, this doesn't mean I completely avoid all actors who are liberals. If I did that, I'd never see any movies (watch any TV shows, listen to any CDs, etc.). But the political issue does play at least a small role in my viewing habits. I refuse, for instance, to see anything with Julia Roberts, who once said something like "Republican comes in the dictionary between repugnant and reptile." Charming. But I don't know - I found her unattractive, annoying, and unappealing way before I developed a political philosophy.

Blah, that was much longer than I wanted it to be, but oh well. I'm interested to see what others have to say.
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Old 03-02-03, 07:14 PM
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I have no opinion. I watch movies because I like watching movies, not because I care about actors' political views. They have a right to do whatever they want, and I don't care. If newspapers want to cover their political views or if they don't, I don't care. How much I like or dislike an actor has nothing to do with their political views.
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Old 03-02-03, 07:28 PM
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Nope. I view them as a character in the film. I try to get my mind out of their personal life when seeing them in a role.
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Old 03-02-03, 07:31 PM
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It doesn't really make me see their roles differently, but if I really can't stand someone's politics, I probably won't see their movies.
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Old 03-02-03, 07:38 PM
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Originally posted by LBPound
I have no opinion. I watch movies because I like watching movies, not because I care about actors' political views. They have a right to do whatever they want, and I don't care.
But what if someone was racist and consistantly made racist
comments in interviews, and stood behind them? If OJ Simpson
(or say if Robert Blake was aquited) and were cast in a movie
in a major role, would it not effect the story for you?

Not trying to attack by any means. In fact, I felt the same as you
until about 2 or 3 weeks ago. It bothers me that I have some
Dvd's in my collection that I just can't watch the same as I did
as little as last month.

Jason
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Old 03-02-03, 07:52 PM
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Originally posted by jasonbird
It bothers me that I have some
Dvd's in my collection that I just can't watch the same as I did
as little as last month.
Which actors/actresses, and based on what quotes?

You mentioned Clooney earlier - are there others? Julia? Babs? Alec "I'm moving to France if...." Baldwin?
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Old 03-02-03, 08:05 PM
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Re: Does an actor's political views affect the way you see them in their roles?

I can distinguish between fantasy and reality, and I couldn't care less what actors (or, to be honest, pretty much anyone) say and believe when they're not on-screen. Though it's been discussed before, I didn't have any qualms seeing "Jeepers Creepers" theatrically or buying it on DVD either.
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Old 03-02-03, 09:03 PM
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Not in the least. What does it really matter to me, its a fantasy world and they're playing a character. The fact that they're pro-this or anti-that has no bearing on their ability to become a character in movie.

I love Arnold Schwarzenneger, but I'm far from running to my local precinct captain to change my party affiliation.
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Old 03-02-03, 09:06 PM
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Originally posted by jasonbird
But what if someone was racist and consistantly made racist
comments in interviews, and stood behind them? If OJ Simpson
(or say if Robert Blake was aquited) and were cast in a movie
in a major role, would it not effect the story for you?
You raise a good point, but the things you mention, to me, aren't 'political views.'

O.J. Simpson may be pro-spousicide...and no one will be able to watch a movie with him the way they would have pre-'94 because of his notoriety. And in that case you're right.

I guess the closest thing I can think of is the director of Jeepers Creepers and Powder being a sick, child molester. Notoriety and it affects the way I view his 'work'.

But if Bruce Willis has something to say about something that I don't like, if I hear it (which I might, but I typically don't look for that), I'm not going to care and I'll see "The Whole Ten Yards" if it looks good. If he did something that made him extremely notorious, that would change my view. But political views alone aren't going to do it.

(Besides Bruce is a good Republican...)
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Old 03-02-03, 09:45 PM
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Re: Re: Does an actor's political views affect the way you see them in their roles?

Originally posted by ctyner
I can distinguish between fantasy and reality, and I couldn't care less what actors (or, to be honest, pretty much anyone) say and believe when they're not on-screen.
Ditto.
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Old 03-02-03, 09:56 PM
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Can't really be bothered to care.

I'm mature enough to realize that not everyone is going to share my opinions and beliefs, whatever they may be.

One thing to keep in mind, though, is that lots of people involved in "the arts" -- be it actors, writers, musicians, authors, or directors -- are probably going to gravitate toward being "liberal" on a lot of issues. It's just a part of the creative/artistic temperament. Not unlike how most stock-brokers and finaciers are probably going lean conservative on a lot of things.
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Old 03-02-03, 10:41 PM
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Originally posted by Josh-da-man
One thing to keep in mind, though, is that lots of people involved in "the arts" -- be it actors, writers, musicians, authors, or directors -- are probably going to gravitate toward being "liberal" on a lot of issues. It's just a part of the creative/artistic temperament.
A very good point.

I still don't rule out Desire to Conform as a factor in at least some of the Hollywood leftwing culture, though.
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Old 03-03-03, 12:28 PM
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Originally posted by inVectiVe
...I'm conservative, and I get real annoyed with all these holier-than-thou liberals routinely denouncing everything I stand for. But I'd like to think that, even if the prevailing Hollywood opinion was in line with mine, I'd still be consistent enough to get somewhat fed up with the nonstop activism.
Mmmmm, no.
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Old 03-03-03, 12:42 PM
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I don't really care one way or the other....they are just as free to speak their mind as anyone else. I watch tv and movies for entertainment....if they entertain me, then I could give a rats ass whether they voted one way or the other. I'm pretty damn liberal, but i'm having a hard time coming up with someone that would wreck a film for me....even Moses doesn't bother me in films. He's an actor - and while i do think he's a giant *******, he also made some great films. Two different things. (well, maybe not )

Some of the invective i've seen spouted around here at folks like Clooney seems so ridiculous to me....Vampyr had a rant a while back in Other forum thread about his telling a critic off that was downright frightening. For those to so vehemently accuse those actors of being holier-than-thou and riding high horses is the very definition of hypocrisy....
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Old 03-03-03, 12:46 PM
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I miss the old days when if an actor or director had a politcial statement to make they made it through their ART. I think all the political blather we hear these days is a reaction by these "artists" who are pissed that they can't express their political beliefs through their art. Instead they make formless junk with no politics, religion, or social statements whatsoever (like Oceans 11, American Sweethearts, The Mirror Has Two Faces) and then get their politics out during the press conference.

That's pretty p*ssy if you ask me. These people don't know how to express themselves. They're more interested in MEDIA than ART. They have the greatest tool at their disposal (the movie camera) but all they do is make movies where they take off their shirts. Then afterward at the press junket they get to make their statement into a microphone. What's the point?

So my answer is: YES, I want to know where you stand...FROM YOUR ART!! Not from Entertainment Tonight.

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Old 03-03-03, 12:50 PM
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i don't know if their political views as much as personality affects my viewing experience. two actors that come to mine are russel crowe and reese witherspoon. russel for his pompus cocky attitude when he was thinking two oscars in a row. what an a-hole. and reese witherspoon from what i read that kevin smith wrote about her for not getting a role in chasing amy. byotch.
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Old 03-03-03, 12:52 PM
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Originally posted by Jackskeleton
Nope. I view them as a character in the film. I try to get my mind out of their personal life when seeing them in a role.
I feel the same way. In a film, the actor becomes someone else. Still, I wish some of these actors would just keep to themselves. It's like they have this impression that because they're rich and famous, they can influence everyone. I know that in some cases this is true, but to the majority of the public I think it makes them look like @sses.
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Old 03-03-03, 12:55 PM
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Except for movies that are themselves political drivel such as Bob Roberts, The American President, Dave or The Contender, the political views of actors don't affect me at all when watching their movies.

Last edited by movielib; 03-26-03 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 03-03-03, 12:57 PM
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Originally posted by Norm de Plume
Mmmmm, no.
It is impossible to overstate the significance of what you have just accomplished here.

Pat yourself on the back, sir, for you have just revolutionized the way debates will be carried out on the Internet from this day forward. Quote a block of text, then proceed to dismantle it point-by-point with an insightful "Mmmmm, no." Brilliant.

I predict that, within mere days, the Quote-and-Mmmmm, no Strategy will emerge as the leading argumentative method on the web, superseding even the time-honored Call-Somebody-Stupid-if-He-Didn't-Like-Your-Favorite-Movie Tactic.

I am truly honored to have witnessed this defining moment in online history.

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Old 03-03-03, 01:05 PM
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Originally posted by inVectiVe
It is impossible to overstate the significance of what you have just accomplished here.

Pat yourself on the back, sir, for you have just revolutionized the way debates will be carried out on the Internet from this day forward. Quote a block of text, then proceed to dismantle it point-by-point with an insightful "Mmmmm, no." Brilliant.

I predict that, within mere days, the Quote-and-Mmmmm, no Strategy will emerge as the leading argumentative tactic on the web, superseding even the time-honored Call-Somebody-Stupid-if-He-Didn't-Like-Your-Favorite-Movie Tactic.

I am truly honored to have witnessed this defining moment in online history.
Mmmmm, no.



had to do it
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Old 03-03-03, 01:38 PM
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Originally posted by WiccanPagan
Mmmmm, no.
had to do it
How dare you.....

Just kidding. That was the funniest thing I've seen on the forum in a while. Thanks!

Y'know, the sad part is, I honestly didn't even realize I was setting myself up for that!

Anyway, starting immediately, I am going to go into as many threads as possible and utilize "Mmmmm, no." It's the new verbal ace up my sleeve. For instance, I'll find the longest, most intricately-detailed, most meticulously-crafted argument against war in Iraq, quote the whole thing, and demolish the logic with "Mmmmm, no." That'll show 'em!
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Old 03-03-03, 04:38 PM
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Doesn't matter to me one way or another. I've enjoyed the work of John Wayne, Jane Fonda, Henry Fonda, James Stewart, William Hurt, and Charles Chaplin. Judging their acting performances based on their political beliefs is like judging a musical work based on the composer's food preferences.
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Old 03-03-03, 05:33 PM
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Originally posted by wendersfan
Judging their acting performances based on their political beliefs is like judging a musical work based on the composer's food preferences.
What wendersfan said.
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