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Thread: Tara dissed on E!NewsLive

  1. #151
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    I can see Maria Butyrskaya as Blanche and David Pelletier as Luke.

    MM

  2. #152
    Custom Woman
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    Any candidates for Stanley Kowalski and Scarlett O'Hara?
    Rgirl

  3. #153
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    Katarina Witt was in a Robert Di Niro movie where she played (naturally) a figure skater who eventually gets shot while performing. But you saw her only from a distance, and she didn't have any lines. So I don't think it can be said that she was doing any acting.

    Carol Heiss was in a 3 Stooges movie. I haven't seen it, but you can picture her playing the straightwoman to those 3 idiots.

    Oksana Baiul was in a TV show where she played (naturally) a figure skater with health problems. She was fascinatingly awful.

    Then there was a Tara TV show, where Tara played, of all things, a figure skater. Nancy Kerrigan was in it too (also as a figure skater), and they were both at the same ABC level of acting.

    So far, the only 'real' figure skating actors were Sonja Henie and Vera Hruba Ralston. Sonja was Academy-award material compared to VHR, whose non-talent helped drive Republic Pictures to bankruptcy.

  4. #154
    Custom Title IDLERACER's Avatar
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    According to the I.M.D.B, she actually is managing to get some work. She's currently playing the voice of a cartoon character on some kid's show called "Generation Jets" and also just finished a light-weight family oriented made for TV movie called "The Metro Chase." Not exactly Shakespear, but hey, whatever pays the bills.

  5. #155
    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    And don't forget Ilia Kulic in Centre Stage who played an aspiring ballet dancer (not a figure skater). He did the most credible job of acting I have ever seen among those mentioned by euterpe.

    But he did not become in demand.

    Joe

  6. #156
    Tripping on the Podium
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    Originally posted by Joesitz
    And don't forget Ilia Kulic in Centre Stage who played an aspiring ballet dancer (not a figure skater). He did the most credible job of acting I have ever seen among those mentioned by euterpe.

    But he did not become in demand.

    Joe
    Thanks for reminding me! I agree, Ilia delivered a surprisingly naturalistic acting turn (in a surprisingly guilty-pleasure movie!) But I was really surprised at how weak a dancer he appeared to be -- even though he was mostly just posing. (Rgirl, if you saw this, I'd be interested in your reaction!)

  7. #157
    cranky girl guinevere's Avatar
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    Originally posted by giseledepkat
    Thanks for reminding me! I agree, Ilia delivered a surprisingly naturalistic acting turn (in a surprisingly guilty-pleasure movie!) But I was really surprised at how weak a dancer he appeared to be -- even though he was mostly just posing. (Rgirl, if you saw this, I'd be interested in your reaction!)
    I thought the problem really was the pathetic editing between Ilia's face shots onstage and the cuts to his dance double. Hilarious! During his 'big dance number', once the cameras pulled back to see the dance, the lighting was really dark and the dancer never ever turned his face toward the audience - AS IF! But Ilia was the only lead who wasn't a real ballet dancer, so I thought he did a good job!

    To be fair, though (and go a tad off-topic), the level of dancing exhibited by the lead in Save the Last Dance was hysterical. The character gives up dancing for maybe a month or two, then gets back into class, and they show her doing a back arabesque (sort of) that was ridiculous! Ha!

    guinevere

    guinevere

  8. #158
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    Originally posted by Joesitz
    And don't forget Ilia Kulic in Centre Stage who played an aspiring ballet dancer (not a figure skater). He did the most credible job of acting I have ever seen among those mentioned by euterpe.

    But he did not become in demand.

    Joe
    I´m glad that Ilia got the experience of acting in a movie and of being present in its premiere. Those can be remembered as one of the special experiences on one´s path... I would though feel sure that winning the Olympic gold medal in Nagano is in a different class of experiences, so to speak.

    I would say that Ilia´s main talent is in skating and because of that I´m feeling very glad that he is pursuing that career only.

    Marjaana
    Last edited by Jaana; 11-02-2003 at 05:00 AM.

  9. #159
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    Originally posted by giseledepkat
    Thanks for reminding me! I agree, Ilia delivered a surprisingly naturalistic acting turn (in a surprisingly guilty-pleasure movie!) But I was really surprised at how weak a dancer he appeared to be -- even though he was mostly just posing. (Rgirl, if you saw this, I'd be interested in your reaction!)
    Gisel,
    (Rgirl comes leaping onstage a la Nijinsky) Here I come to give my great dance opinion on Ilia Kulik as a ballet dancer in "Center Stage." Here's the deal, IMO: Dancers and figure skaters train their bodies in completely different ways. I once said in a post that I had seen video of Gordeeva & Grinkov as well as Oksana Baiul (when she was 16) doing a ballet barre and that relative to elite level ballet dancers, that is, dancers who would be in just the corps de ballet of American Ballet Theatre, the real company on which the American Ballet Company of "Center Stage" was based, at best they would have been in the beginning levels of a professional school or moderate to advanced levels of a local ballet studio.

    It's not that G&G or Oksana were that bad at ballet, it's just that figure skaters use ballet only to enhance their main training. They don't spend up to eight hours a day taking class and rehearsing in a style that develops the body in a very specific way. I've seen dancers who danced for 20 years after they haven't danced for 20 years and they still look like dancers. Some of it is genetic, too, especially for female ballet dancers.

    For one thing, elite male ballet dancers are more muscular in the upper body than male figure skaters. Male figure skaters can't afford to be too muscular in the chest and shoulders. It inhibits their jumping. What male skaters really need is power in the muscles that bring the arms in (adduct the humerus) for getting multiple rotations in jumps and also for spinning. This is mainly where I think Ilia looked "undancerly" compared to the other male dancers in the cast--at least of what they showed. The director wisely cut away from Kulik's lower body, since he would not have looked anything like a ballet dancer, nor should he. A lot of the greatness of Ilia's jump technique as a skater comes from the fact that his body is rail thin, with just enough width in the shoulders to biomechanically stabilize his jumps.

    Now in the scene where the dancers went out to the bar to "boogie," Ilia definitely held his own. But that's bar dancing, not the highly technically demanding style of ballet. If you've ever seen the "Rocky" movies, you'll see another example of how movies and reality don't match. Sylvester Stallone, especially for "Rocky II" really built his body to look amazing on screen. But he looked nothing like a real boxer. Look at any heavyweight boxer and you you'll never see the bulging muscles and "cut," "shredded," or "freaky" look of the body builder, which is closer to what Stallone's body was. But Stallone knew moviegoers didn't want to see Muhammad Ali's body; they wanted to see something closer to Arnold Schwarznegger's body, and that people wouldn't care if it was like a boxer's or not.

    In the case of "Center Stage" apparently the director felt Ilia was the best actor for the job, which called for a Russian who spoke English well. If they hired him because he was the OGM, they sure didn't use it in the advertising. Anyway, it's not like "Center Stage" was going to be vying for any Academy Awards--and that's not to diss it. The movie had a specific audience in mind and was made for that audience. The final ballet sequence could never happen in real life the way it happened on film either. Although there were some realistic things in the film, most of it called for some serious suspension of disbelief.

    Anyway, I agree with Jaana. Kulik's main talent by far is figure skating. To be a successful actor, you've got to put as much time and work into "making it" as a skater does training. I think Ilia happened to be in the right place at the right time for that role and his acting was good enough to land the part. But my guess is that he probably immediately saw how much dedication it takes to become a successful actor and after he collected his paycheck and went to the premiere, refocused on skating. After all, you could say "nothing came of it" for Ethan Steifel or any of the other dancers in the cast. Even Mikhail Barishnykov, who had a relatively successful career for a ballet dancer, only did about five movies. The days of the dancer/movies star such as Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, Ann Miller, Cyd Charisse, Ginger Rogers, Eleanor Powell, and others sadly went the way of the movie musical.

    I just wish SOI would rehire Ilia. They've had more than one US male singles star, why not two Russian singles stars? Even my "bowling and brewskies" male cousin thought Ilia "stole the show" when he saw SOI live in '99.
    Rgirl

  10. #160
    Tripping on the Podium
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    guinevere -- good point about the editing in Center Stage, and this:
    Originally posted by guinevere
    To be fair, though (and go a tad off-topic), the level of dancing exhibited by the lead in Save the Last Dance was hysterical. The character gives up dancing for maybe a month or two, then gets back into class, and they show her doing a back arabesque (sort of) that was ridiculous! Ha! [/B]
    Ok, I'd have to agree, Julia Stiles is not much of a dancer, but I looooved this movie! It's true that the final triumphant "audition" scene was fairly ridiculous (they accept her on the spot!?!) but where the dancing was lacking, the acting and emotions were so spot on that a "willing suspension of disbelief" was easy to achieve, in my case at least. The difference being that Julia is an extremely talented and capable young actor who could more or less "fake it" as a dancer, while Ilia is neither an actor nor a dancer. That's why I have to give him major props for not embarassing himself in Center Stage, and actually adding value to the film.

    Rgirl, thanks so much for the fascinating analysis of the differing demands of ballet and on ice (and boxing!) training, and how each shapes the body to it's own ends. I'm learning so much from reading your posts! You rock!

  11. #161
    cranky girl guinevere's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Rgirl
    ...The final ballet sequence could never happen in real life the way it happened on film either. Although there were some realistic things in the film, most of it called for some serious suspension of disbelief.
    Rgirl
    Oh come now, Rgirl...are you telling me you've never seen a ballet where they drive a real motorcycle onto the stage (and on the precious marley )?!?

    :D :D :D

    guinevere

  12. #162
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    ... or a ballet where, in the blink of an eye, everyone's costume changed color? (That was my favorite moment; it just seemed to say, "Yeah, this is totally over the top, and we know it!)

  13. #163
    Keeper of Michelle's Nose berthes ghost's Avatar
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    "Katarina Witt was in a Robert Di Niro movie where she played (naturally) a figure skater who eventually gets shot while performing. But you saw her only from a distance, and she didn't have any lines. So I don't think it can be said that she was doing any acting."

    While I agree in priciple( it was a tiny role and she hardly tore up the screen with fine acting), I have to be a stickler for detail. You are incorrect on two counts: 1. She had several close ups, thought she was hardly a lead character and was never on the scrren for long at a time, and 2. She had several lines. Well, OK maybe 2 or 3 or 4, but she did speak. Oh, and don't forget the accent, or attempt at one. She played a RUSSIAN figure skater who eventually gets shot while performing.

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