Saturday, February 19, 2011

Melissa Leo Goes Glam

Her new ads create controversy

Though this new controversy involving Oscar nominee Melissa Leo and her more glamorous side reminds me a bit of Bette Davis's botched screen test at the end of "The Star" (Davis insists on playing her beaten-down cleaning woman as sexy), I don't know if it matters so much.

Yeah, maybe it seems obnoxious or desperate as some have called it but, in the end, who the hell cares?

Here's more from the Gold Derby:

"Last week, Supporting Actress nominee Melissa Leo ('The Fighter') took out her own trade ads touting her more glamorous side. The character actress, who is the frontrunner at the Oscars, wanted to show the industry her versatility. Instead, she set off an on-going debate about the propriety of such self-promotion.

"Pete Hammond (Deadline) spoke to her last Thursday, as the campaign ran timed to coincide with ballots arriving for Oscar voters. Leo told Pete that, frustrated after failing to land talk show gigs and magazine covers, “I took matters into my own hands. I knew what I was doing and told my representation how earnest I was about this idea. I had never heard of any actor taking out an ad as themselves and I wanted to give it a shot."

There's been much back and forth on the matter. I think Jeff Wells, of Hollywood-Elsewhere, not known for being the gentlest of critics, was the most kind about the whole supposed debacle:

"Ads are always judged in terms of style, class and tone, and Leo's now-disappeared ads, I feel, got it right. They were fine. She looked great. No harm done. We've all been so trained to squint our eyes and arch our backs whenever an individual takes out an ad of any kind. Only corporations and major companies can do this!"


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