Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Freedom-hood.

The best things in life are free…so goes the saying and so goes success. Ask yourself would you do what you do for a living or work whatever you call everyday for free? If so you are the luckiest and if not there is a wee bit o work to be done in our perceptions of what we call “work” or our careers. I am guilty of always going about my career for the wrong values and have been adrift for decades trying to jump start my drive for making movies and or television which interestingly enough started to wane (my career) right when I was becoming more whole and honest. In other words I was very successful as a kid when it is manic need that propelled me forward. What I realized after years pf therapy was that I was motivated by a need to be loved. Then a funny thing happened I achieved the goal I found the thing I most needed or thought I lacked and needed and Voila my career evaporated and the drive evaporated at the same time. As if getting sober emotionally killed what made me fascinating. Don’t you notice how certain actors were way more interesting in their work when they were raging drunks or coke heads. It is true for some but maybe not across the board or in every case but still a few major stars have maybe ruined their “hotness” by becoming sober as if they were de-clawed or neutered. I work as a volunteer trying to get films for our local film festival and nothing makes a person realize how powerless we all truly are than trying to get Hollywood-sters to give us their films. The town just lets one know how very unimportant I am by the abuse we face when trying to showcase films. Even if you star in them. Last year was rugged and I may never recover from the abuse of a certain studio. I know in my heart who lead the charge and I suspect their motivation was fear that I “little ol’ me” would steal their thunder which I did not. Still we were jerked around by them and I curse them for it. I kind of wish them all ill. I know not very evolved but hey they behaved badly. Maybe getting old and being overweight is sin against the machine that is Hollywood. I am not obese just not Hollywood thin and I am not young I am old compared to what they like. I get that. Yet on the other hand, I think reality TV has given us a glimpse into a truth. The truth is if it(content) is good and real and interesting it doesn’t matter what it looks like. That is the saving grace, “the thing” it has to be very good. When I say good it has to capture our attention and hold it. I think weirdo’s like Ted Nugent mistake the genius of Howard Stern…they don’t realize that he is measured in his outrageousness that he practices how far he can go as if he and only he knows what it is. In fact it is true he knows the limit from decades of practice. When some one flails so feloniously inappropriate threats against the President to make a point it is a measure of society and how far it has gone down. So we just have to take a breath and say “poor guy” he needs attention and this is how he wants to get it. I think he should be arrested for threatening to kill. I think he should be arrested for inciting murder amongst his followers. I like what I do and I do it for free occasionally I get a check or something but honestly it is for free what I get paid for is auditioning. I didn’t make that up, Phillip Seymour Hoffman told me that once. He said his real job was directing a theater company and that they pay him to audition and leave his day job. He would do the acting part for free. I say here, here…

3 comments:

Dwane T. said...

I once had a job in which I was ridiculously underpaid, but I had wanted that job since college. I was getting paid to try to save the world 100+ kids at a time. Going to work everyday was paradise, and if I could have done it for free I would have. I miss those days, but I understand what you're saying.

As for stars becoming less interesting when they become more sober, I don't believe that is the case. I think sober minds take less roles, and/or less controversial roles in less controversial movies. So the high-profile hype may die down, but the fan base stays intact. That is the case with you. Your fans are still your fans. The love you received in your younger years, is the love we have for you now. In terms of your drive... you played the game and won... early... on your own terms. And like most creative folks do under those circumstances, you began looking for new worlds to conquer... including your inner world.

As always... looking forward to your next movie...

Rae Dawn Chong said...

Okay for arguments sake I think sobriety is better than being addicted to what ever one may have issues with for sure and for survival still I do think it changes the work.
The quality of it. as if being clean dims the flame. It is as if the turmoil the desperation within fires up and creates an energy that is hard to duplicate. i hate to say this because it gives ammo to those who should be in a program and are not. It is a tricky subject. Definitely I don't want to promote addiction but I do think being sober changes us creatively in ways not always good or productive. Certainly those of us who are sober are NOT willing to sacrifice our sanity

Dwane T. said...

Well, the truth is I can't debate you on this, because you know your life and your world, and as a fan of both I only know various snapshots. I also know that the success of many people in many fields are fueled by their demons and addictions. For that reason I love people like Robert Downey Jr. and Mickey Rourke, who did amazing work before and after sobriety. But even more, I am amazed at the quality of the work they did when they were still "lost". The fact that they were so amazing does back up your statement though.

One thing about stars ruining their "hotness", both in their physical and box office attractiveness, is that they experience natural changes as does the public. Downey went from looking so good he looked airbrushed, to looking like death, to looking distinguished. But without the drug issues, his hotness would have transitioned from again anyway. His amazing, quirky performances have been replaced by distinguished, cerebral performances in his sober years. Tina Fey gets "hotter" in looks and career as she gets older. You were documented as one of the most flawlessly beautiful women in the world... a tough act to follow even for you. But you're still beautiful today. Snd the energy you released toward acting... and acting up... is now released toward helping and educating people. That's sobriety, but it's also maturity.

Anyway, I'm glad you get paid for auditioning, so you can write your blog for free. I love your work in print as much as I do on screen.

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