While away in Canada (I promise I'll stop bringing it up eventually) I was able to meet Shala from Life Between Films, and she seems to have come up with a challenge for the internet. She's posted three options for people to give their answers to a 6° of Separation Challenge. She says that you should choose 1 (or more) of the challenges poised, so I chose to do all three (because I'm an over achiever like that). So for those of you unfamiliar this game is based on the principle that any two individuals (no matter how randomly chosen) are within six steps of each other between friends of friends. Movies buffs, thanks to the film with the same title, decided to turn this idea into a game with actors and actresses in film. So here's my crack at it.
James Marsden to Denzel Washington
- James Marsden to Halle Berry (X-Men) While the franchise eventually devolved into drivel I stand by the first two films by Bryan Singer. With two solid action films under their belt X-Men is a name that will be sticking around in cinema for a very long time. It was one of the early comic book based films, before Hollywood went 100% crazy about comic books, and it launched Halle Berry as the next 'it' girl of movies that would plague young men's dreams for a couple more decades.
- Halle Berry to Spike Lee (Jungle Fever) Spike Lee, being an easy step in this process, actually gave Ms. Berry her cinema debut in this film as a small role as the crack junkie who you see for about three scenes in this film. Lee also casts himself in a bit role as the friend to the leading man putting them against one another. Jungle Fever is one of my top five Spike Lee films and I wonder how it doesn't get talked about more often.
- Spike Lee to Denzel Washington (Malcolm X) The film that cemented Denzel as the acting powerhouse that we know him as today and illuminating all the parts of the iconic man that the world didn't know about, that is if they skipped history that week.
Andrew Garfield to Claire Daines
- Andrew Garfield to Heath Ledger (The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus) Being the first film I saw Garfield in and the last film that Ledger ever filmed (dying while still in the process of making it) it seems like the right film to kick off this introduction. With a wizard of sorts trying to win followers we see who between these two characters turns out to be the real believer as the wizard takes in Ledger after being found left for dead hanging beneath a bridge and Garfield having been with the troupe forever trying to make sure that the core beliefs of the group are not compromised by this new element.
- Heath Ledger to Julia Stiles (10 Things I Hate About You) It's an adaptation of the famous William Shakespeare's play, The Taming of the Shrew, and the fact that there are people who've seen this movie and don't know that scares me. With Heath playing the man who tames the shrew (Stiles) it plays off pretty well in the high school setting and I dare anyone to not smile at the musical interlude we're treated to by Ledger in the stands.
- Julia Stiles to Matt Damon (The Bourne Ultimatum) Probably not the best on screen pairing but definitely one of the best action films of the last decade. Greengrass redefined how action films are presented thanks to his style of filmmaking that he gave the last two of the Bourne films of the original trilogy (enough qualifiers for you?). As Damon runs around the world trying to keep Stiles safe and at the same time find out a bit more about who he is the film stands out as the best of the franchise and the point they should've left it at.
- Matt Damon to Robert De Niro (The Good Shephard) Another spy film that I feel isn't discussed enough. It's the one where the action is non existent and it's more about guys sitting in cars or panel vans patiently gathering information than anyone being a James Bond type character who runs in with a smile and a gun and walks out with an explosion in his rear view.
- Robert De Niro to Claire Daines (Stardust) Stardust is one of my all time favourite films. It's not necessarily the movie you'd talk about when discussing the most revered films ever made or greatest, but definitely one of the most fun and enjoyable adventure films you're ever going to see. Add in a Robert De Niro in drag and you've sold me.
Kate Winslett to Chris Pine
- Kate Winslett to Billy Zane (Titanic) What ever happened to Billy Zane? Remember Phantom? Well regardless Titanic (I don't care who wants to complain about runtime) is a great movie. It's the epic that we needed in the 90s and proved that blockbuster filmmaking can still be grand and not just about the explosion per minute figure that studios would be asking for.
- Billy Zane to Owen Wilson (Zoolander) "Listen to your friend Billy Zane." Is there anything more you can say about this film and the moment these two cross paths?
- Owen Wilson to Luke Wilson (The Royal Tenenbaums) Here's my brother hand off as we see them pair off as friends who wished they were brothers in a Wes Anderson film. This is hands down the best performance I've seen from Luke Wilson and Owen Wilson just feels better when he's in an Anderson film.
- Luke Wilson to Zoe Saldana (Death at a Funeral) Not the most needed or best remake but a fun film to watch. With Zoe Saldana playing the girl who made a mistake one night and slept with Luke Wilson we're able to enjoy a few choice moments with these actors as they frustrate each other to know end as hi-jinks ensue in the proceedings below.
- Zoe Saldana to Chris Pine (Star Trek) Did you see the new Star Trek? I saw it three times in the theatre that year. When Kirk hits on Uhura in the bar it shows me that I'll probably watch any movie with Pine in it. He's able to play the charisma to his advantage and he could be doing some of the worst things in the world I'd still be rooting for him at the end of the film.
Some Challenges of my Own:
- Sean Connery to Sean Bean
- Jeff Bridges to Toshiro Mifune
- Ryan Gosling to Jared Leto