I like David Morse, since the 1980s, who seem low key but is always terrifically effective (he was great as the cop who intimidated Hugh Laurie''s Gregory House, and as George Washington in [italic]John Adams[/italic]).%0D\
I like Margo Martindale, ever since playing Hilary Swank''s cold mom in [italic]Million Dollar Baby[/italic], and is versaile not just with villain roles (she was warm as an understanding relative even in a drivel of a Hallmark Hall of Fame, [italic]Silver Bells[/italic]).%0D\
Who are some of other character actors that impress you?
David Morse was sexy as shit.
Some years ago, David Morse gave a superb performance Off-Broadway in HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE.
The late great James Whitmore%0D\
I like both the Davids.
David Morse played George Washington in the Adams miniseries.\
Another Morse I like is Robert, who players Cooper on Mad Men.\
I like Patricia Clarkson in almost anything.
Jane Lynch, esp. in Party Down.
I was a huge fan of ST. ELSEWHERE, one of the best series ever, and fell in love with Morse and his character of Jack almost 30 years ago. I''m so pleased to see his career has prospered in the years since the show ended.
Charles Coburn, especially in [italic]Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.[/italic]
Jennifer Coolidge. Catherine O''Hara. The late Peter Falk. Fred Ward. Fred Willard. Peter Dinklage. %0D\
But I''m going to single out Chris Cooper, because of all the times I''ve failed to recognize him. I can think he''s someone I haven''t seen before, he can be so different.
Loved Catherine O''Hara on Six Feet Under.
This has come up every now and then over the years, and my answer never changes... David Strathairn and Chris Cooper. %0D\
I saw Strathairn on the Days and Nights of Molly Dodd, and when I started following his career I noticed Chris Cooper as they were both in Matewan.
Much as I like everyone who''s been mentioned, nobody''s done it better than Charles Durning. So many memorable performances, but if I could only pick one, it would be as Jessica Lange''s dad in "Tootsie".\
Alan Hale Sr., who resembled Charles Durning as to type, was another great one, along with Frank Morgan. As far as the ladies go, I''d stick with Mary Astor and Joan Blondell.
Frederic Forrest. He really should have gotten an Oscar nod for "Valley Girl."
Mary Woronov - she can''t really act but she''s got an incredible presence.
Peter Stormare = Awsome
The great underrated Peter Gerety.\
Look him up.
Definitively Oliver Platt. I loved him in the West Wing.
Xander Berkeley. Always thought he was a terrific actor. Always thought he was hot.\
Then someone I knew moved to LA and married him.
The late Anne Haney, started late and really needed that one big role, but died before getting it.
Mary Kay Adams.
YES Xander Berkeley. Anyone ever met him? I''m sure he is a nice, normal guy.....
Ed Harris and Sam Shepherd before the booze got to him. I loved him in Days of Heaven.
Yes, Xander Berkeley is a very nice man. And the woman who married him is also terrific.\
When you see character actors so frequently, you can be sure they are decent people. With so many actors to pick from for the secondary roles that do not sell the project, you usually go with people who are pleasant to work with.
Robert Wisdom- he was Lt. Bunny Colvin on "The Wire" (Actually, "The Wire" was full to the brim with great character actors)%0D\
Haruko Sugimura- Japanese actress who appeared in many of Ozu''s movies, also some of Kurosawa''s... Totally devasting as the "selfish" daughter in "Tokyo Story". I read somewhere recently that she was one the first to bring the Stanislavski method to Japan.%0D\
Maurice Benichou- he was in "Amelie" and has been in some of Michael Haneke''s movies like "Cache" and "Code Unknown". I love the scene in "Code Unknown" when Juliette Binoche is harassed on the subway.
[quote]Haruko Sugimura- Japanese actress who appeared in many of Ozu''s movies, also some of Kurosawa''s... Totally devasting as the "selfish" daughter in "Tokyo Story". I read somewhere recently that she was one the first to bring the Stanislavski method to Japan.\
OMG, "Tokyo Story" is one of my favorite movies of all time and that nasty daughter is my favorite character. You just hate that bitch from the moment you see her. My second favorite character is the sweet daughter-in-law whose husband had died in WWII.\
Why don''t Westerners react more to this movie? I''ve shown it to friends and few seem to "get" it. By the end of the movie, I''m crying like a baby and everyone else is sitting around dry-eyed and bored.
I think one of the great things about her perfomance in "Tokyo Story" is that although the Haruko Sugimura character is a completely mean, selfish person, you also start to see that she is caught in the circumstances in her own life. The way she plays the character is so razor-sharp it makes me just want to laugh out loud.%0D\
The "good" daughter-in-law, Setsuko Hara, is essentially a death-driven character who has given up on the future. Both characters embody many contradictory elements, just like in real life.%0D\
BTW, did you know "Tokyo Story" is based on an American movie called "Make Way for Tomorrow" with Beulah Bondi (now there''s a great character actress!)?%0D\
I had never heard that TS was based on an American movie. Nice bit of trivia!\
It''s very true that the daughter-in-law had just given up on life. Doesn''t the father even recommend she remarry and just forget her dead husband, his son? And wasn''t it right after his own wife''s funeral?\
Speaking of the funeral, I love the scene where the kids start fighting over their mother''s possessions. The bitchy daughter shows a fleeting moment of sadness and humanity, and then WHAM! she''s right back to her old self.
Diane Wiest, Clancy Brown, Amy Madigan, Holland Taylor
Got to agree with above posters on David Morse, also David Straithairn, Clancy Brown, and Stanley Tucci. Always love seeing them in any film or TV show. Always good. Allmost always sexy in that older gusy way%0D\
To that I%E2%80%99ll add Joe Pantoliano. I know I''m going to like whatever I''m watching if he''s in it %0D
Vivian Vance & William Frawley
Best of the best - Beverlee McKinsey and Mary Kay Adams:
Before I clicked the thread, I thought Margo Martindale and Chris Cooper among the living (Straithairn is a terrific choice, mentioned earlier).
Gladys Cooper, Teresa Wright, Thelma Ritter, Karl Malden would be late greats off the top of my head.
One of my favorite character actors is the rugged, virile, balding Greek-Canadian actor Elias Koteas. I'm sure many of you recall from his supporting roles in films such as Some Kind of Wonderful, Look Who’s Talking Too, Exotica, Fallen, The Thin Red Line and, more recently, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Shutter Island, The Killer Inside Me and Let Me In. He is frequently compared to both a young Robert De Niro and to Christopher Meloni of OZ and Law & Order SVU fame.
In several films, Elias Koteas shows an impressive bulge straining heavily against the fly of his pants. In the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film from 1989, back when Koteas had long flowing hair, he wears thin gray sweatpants and you can see his impressively masculine bulge swinging back and forth in a few scenes, notably when he falls off a swing on the porch. You can trace the juicy outline of his thick, musky, likely uncut endowment through the worn fabric of the sweatpants.
In the 2001 film Novocaine, Koteas has another interesting character role, as the prankster brother of Steve Martin. In his opening scene we see him playing dead, lying on the kitchen floor wearing nothing but tight red briefs and covered in fake blood that is later revealed to be paint. This scene gives wonderful coverage of both Koteas' meaty Greek ass and the fat salami-shaped mound in the front of his briefs.
In David Fincher's 2007 film Zodiac, there is a wonderful moment where Koteas – as a daddyish Vallejo police officer – answers the door to Jake Gyllenhaal in the middle of the night. Koteas strides to the door with a slow, lazy swagger in a pair of thin, beige, 70s polyester pants that reveal the delicious outline of his musky Greek sausage. To me this scene gives a clear sense of weight in space – one can feel the texture and weight of his virile, middle-aged maleness filling the warm fabric of his slacks, forming a protruding mound that begs to be caressed through the material.
Koteas may be at his sexiest in David Cronenberg's 1996 film Crash, where he plays the bisexual, suicidal car crash fetishist Vaughan. He wears tight black jeans and has a delicious swagger, though I can't recall any crotch shots as good as the aforementioned films. There is, however, a very horny scene where he sucks face with James Spader in a car and then they lick each other's car crash wounds, including a tattoo of the angry red bruise of a steering wheel he has imprinted across his ribs.
I've actually worked with several of the favorites mentioned in this thread: David Morse, David Strathairn and Chris Cooper....all 3 very sweet, shy and intelligent gentlemen.
And Charles Durning, who was fun and hilarious and mischievous.
And Margo Martindale, who was earthy and caring and sincere.
Big love for Harriet Harris!
"In David Fincher's 2007 film Zodiac, there is a wonderful moment where Koteas – as a daddyish Vallejo police officer – answers the door to Jake Gyllenhaal in the middle of the night. Koteas strides to the door with a slow, lazy swagger in a pair of thin, beige, 70s polyester pants that reveal the delicious outline of his musky Greek sausage. To me this scene gives a clear sense of weight in space – one can feel the texture and weight of his virile, middle-aged maleness filling the warm fabric of his slacks, forming a protruding mound that begs to be caressed through the material."
I bet Jake thought the same thing
OMG! What about...Margaret Hamilton for the Wizard of OZ and Hattie McDaniel for Gone With The Wind.
I miss J.T. Walsh.
Other favorites not mentioned are Joe Pantoliano, Steve Buscemi, Powers Boothe, Dan Hedaya, and William Fichtner.
The death of Eileen Brennan had me thinking. I know it's probably the "elder" bit in me peeking out that says, "Oh, we don't have any unique performers now versus then." However, it really does seem like many of the younger teen and twentysomething actors and actresses are picked solely on appearance and not on any sort of quirky, notable talent. Who are your favorite character actors/actresses? Am I missing anyone under 40 who you think fits that description?
Thelma Ritter. She wasn't unique, but she was real.
Chris Cooper - I have never seen a bad performance from him. He improves every movie he's in.
I think that most of the cast on Orange is the New Black would qualify as interesting character actresses.
I mean, they might even 'go down' in history as some of the most talented.
Not familiar with her work, but what about Greta Gerwig? Or Chloe Sevigny who she looks like. Parker Posey as well maybe? But then they all knowingly go for quirky offbeat roles.
The odd, ugly Frenchman from Diva
Enrico Colantoni (sp.?) - Elliot the photographer on Just Shoot Me, Veronica Mars' father, currently Elias the mob boss on Person of Interest, recently on the cop series Flashpoint.
John C. Reilly
Ed Harris? Too good looking maybe.
Lizann Mitchell - Anthony Hopkins' sister in The Human Stain and various righteaous black women and judges on crime shows and procedurals. Saw her on Broadway in Having Our Say and in the FIRST and GOOD all black Trip To Bountiful.
Anne Dudek, Ashley Williams.
Madeline Kahn - "just this once let Miss Trixie sit up front with her big tits"
I miss Madeline Kahn.
On the slightly younger list: Jeffrey Wright!! Fucking genius in [italic] Angels in America. [/italic] Fuckin' brilliant in almost any role he plays. I literally did not recognize him in [italic] Broken Flowers [/italic] with Bill Murray.
Carroll O'Connor was a very respected and recognizable character actor before [italic] All in the Family [/italic] made him a household name. Same goes for Agnes Moorehead and [italic] Bewitched, [/italic] although the latter was still, technically, a "supporting" part.
Josh Malina, who is in everything.
Somehow, someone took my thread and posted it here as R68.
Not that I mind, really. But now we have two threads on character actors.
I was wondering what was going on there. I've been seeing old threads bumped that are along the same lines as new ones.
Don't mind if threads get merged at all, but the new duplicates are the problem. How many Lindsay gets out of rehab threads does one need.
I think the other thread is asking for younger, current character actors, vs. just list your favorite character actors. I've posted in both threads.
Ann Dowd in Compliance, and also as Channing Tatum's mother in Side Effects
Michael Emerson. Absolutely love him.
I see "In Cold Blood" fairly often, because of Scott Wilson and Robert Blake. They had an uncanny resemblance to the real killers.
Also agree about Frederic Forrest. He should have rec'd a nomination for "Apocalypse Now", as well.
When "St. Elsewhere" was on, I used to favor David Morse, but also loved the villanous Terence Knox. Hated Howie Mandel's character for "harrassing" my favorite. Was also interested in Ed Begley, Jr. because someone told me I walked like him. Afterwards, I made a great effort to NOT walk like him. Failed!
Still love all of them!
Grace Zabriskie, Mary Kay Pace, Bruce Dern - yes, they were all on Big Lvoe.
R91 - Actually the older trio in St Elswhere, Norman Lloyd, William Daniels, and Ed Flanders were really good.
Becky Ann Baker
Ronnie Claire Edwards
Stanley Kamel - probably best known as Monk's psychologist but he played bit parts in dozens of other shows (Golden Girls, Melrose Place) and movies.
Stanley Kamel is rumoured to have been gay.
I can't believe no one has mentioned Edie McClurg. She's been in everything and she's always great.
I will always associate him, first and foremost, with "Raising Arizona" and the Tracey Ullman Show....but the guy has been working seemingly non-stop, for the past 30 years. Over 150 film and TV credits, both comedy & drama.
Most recently, I saw him in an episode of "The Fosters", and he was great as Stef's (Teri Polo) father, who has never fully accepted that she left her husband and fell in love with a woman. But still, the second I laid eyes on him, my first thought was, "Hey! Glen from Raising Arizona!"