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Entries in Jane Fonda (84)


Your Fav' Eighties Ladies!

Over the past couple of months we've been holding "Best Character" polls for Oscar's Best Actress category history. We asked not who should win the Oscar but which characters own real estate in your memory. Previously you selected Miranda Priestley, Clarice Starling and other iconic bitches as your favorites from the Nineties and the Aughts. 

But what of the 1980s? Here are the results. *asterisks indicate Oscar winning performances.

Three unarguably iconic characters: Sophie, Celie and Aurora



  1. *SOPHIE ZAWISTOWSKI (Meryl Streep) from Sophie's Choice
  2. CELIE (Whoopi Goldberg) from The Color Purple 
  3. *AURORA GREENWAY (Shirley Maclaine) from Terms of Endearment
  4. KAREN SILKWOOD (Meryl Streep) from Silkwood
  5. VICTORIA GRANT (Julie Andrews) from Victor/Victoria


Diane Keaton's wondrous performance in REDS (1981) has not been forgotten.Runners Up: To complete the top ten you'd need (in descending order) a third Streep with KAREN BLIXEN from Out of Africa, Debra Winger's EMMA GREENWAY from Terms..., Jessica Lange's rendition of troubled movie star Frances, and with nearly a tie for tenth place Katharine Hepburn's *ETHEL THAYER from On Golden Pond and Diane Keaton's LOUISE BRYANT from Reds

Observations: The Streepster's reascendance in the Aughts has obviously polished her earlier work to a healthy shine which would partially explain her tremendous lead as "Sophie" (well, that and the performance itself) and Karen Blixen's near top five placement, despite being hardly as memorable as Sophie or the other Streep/Karen. 

Weakest Showing: While Jessica Lange was an Oscar favorite in the 1980s, her JEWEL IVY in Country received 0 votes. But then Oscar's oft-derided "Year of the Farm Wives" fared terribly, with all three of the farm women failing to muster much enthusiasm. And to think they could have had Kathleen Turner's fiction writer Joan Wilder from Romancing the Stone in there. (She would've hit the top five most memorable characters, don'cha think?)


Dangerous Ladies ruled the Late Eighties


  1. LT ELLEN RIPLEY (Sigourney Weaver) in Aliens
  2. ALEX FORREST (Glenn Close) in Fatal Attraction
  3. *ANNIE WILKES (Kathy Bates) in Misery
  4. SUSIE DIAMOND (Michelle Pfeiffer) in The Fabulous Baker Boys
  5. MARQUISE DE MERTEUIL (Glenn Close) in Dangerous Liaisons


Runners Up: Completing the top ten in descending order are Julia Robert's Pretty Woman VIVIAN WARD (who initially looked like a top three threat but kept fading throughout the course of voting), Cher's *LORETTA CASTORINI in Moonstruck, Streep's SUZANNE VALE (AKA CARRIE FISHER) in Postcards from the Edge, Anjelica Huston's hard as diamonds LILLY in The Grifters and in a tie for tenth place Holly Hunter's JANE CRAIG from Broadcast News and Jessica Tandy's *MISS DAISY the one who who drove right over the Pfeiffer/Oscar dream. Damn you, Oscar voters!

Observations: Looking back it looks like Meryl Streep owned the first half of the 1980s while Glenn Close threatened her dominance in the decade's second half. And to think they might go at it again this year?!? This poll was the most contentious of the six polls we've held with very small differences in rank between the winners and much in the way of surges and drops. A certain formidable alien fighting woman was always out front but Alex Forrest refused to be ignored and wouldn't allow her a huge lead. Spots 3 through 10 shifted repeatedly with my beloved Kathleen Turner's PEGGY SUE just missing the top ten. [Sniffle]

Fonda and Bridges in THE MORNING AFTER (1986)Weakest Showing: Jane Fonda's ALEX from The Morning After  (which Nick and I tried to recall on the "1986" podcast) received 0 votes from the nearly 800 cast. Of Fonda's seven nominations it's her last and (obviously) her least remembered. It's currently available on Netflix's Instant Watch. Sadly Sally Kirkland's ANNA only barely registered. Kirkland is best known to today's audiences as that crazy-dressing lady who sometimes shows up at the Oscars but that surprise nomination for 1987 was hard-earned. Don't believe me? Watch the movie on Netflix Instant Watch.

Should we do the 1970s?  
What do you make of these 80s polls?
Did your fellow TFE readers choose well or would you like to stalk them with Alex Forrest's butcher knife, Ripley's flame-thrower or Annie's hobblin' hammer and right the wrongs they done?


Cannes Goddesses Pt. 1: A Red Carpet Conversation

Jane Fonda. She Knows She Rules.Last time on red carpet lineup Kurt and Nathaniel chatted about the annual Met Gala. This time out, Jose and Nathaniel are discussing the first few days of Cannes international fashion parade. Find out which actress Nathaniel is starting a religion to worship and which audition tape Jose dreams of seeing.

Nathaniel: Hello Jose. I must know. Before I throw dresses at you if you've been following Cannes 64 at all?

Jose: ‬ ‪Hi! Well yes, but mostly for the dresses actually, considering most of us mortals never get to see all those movies they talk about over there.‬

Nathaniel: ‪So though you're a cinephile, for Cannes you're rather like the very casual Oscar watcher then?
It being all about the gowns?

Jose: ‬ ‪Sadly, yes. I blame distributors!‬

Nathaniel: The perfect scapegoat.

Jose: ‬ ‪At least they can't take fashion away from us.‬

Nathaniel: ‬ ‪True. Or movie stars for that matter.‬ Even when the movies aren't there anymore you're still a legend for the purposes of the red carpet. Like Faye Dunaway...


Jose: ‬ ‪I love that they're paying tribute to her in Cannes.

Nathaniel: ‬ ‪It does feel like a reevaluation is coming. Or at least a revival. Even Mommie Dearest... you don't hear people dissing that performance anymore so much as voicing the theory that gonzo acting ruined her career.‬

Jose:  Absolutely, but I think she'll do more serious work. She's even quoting Meryl Streep in interviews!

Nathaniel:  I don't know enough about fashion to know what type of dress this is but gossamer modest flowy light things always make me think of ghosts in Victorian mansions... or Stevie Nicks. Who is also back!

Jose:  Faye looks so graceful. Stevie rocks! But I think the new queen of ghost wear is that Florence from the Machine lady.

Nathaniel:  This is the part of most celebrity discussions where I would start singing

the dog days are over
the dog days are done
can you hear the horses
because here they come

and then someone would snark about Sarah Jessica Parker.

BUT we both like SJP. So there.

Jose:  "Like"? I'm obsessed with her! People can say whatever they want about her face and Sex and the City but the woman is a red carpet visionary! This Elie Saab dress is proof of that. I love how she's been trying to bring back the 70s lately (with her in charge of Halston and everything...)

Nathaniel: I will say that this dress looks MUCH better in motion than it does in a still photograph. Because here it look just... too much. Too much fabric for a tiny diva. But she definitely is a risk-taker. And bringing back the 70s is going well for her if red carpet looks from other women are to be believed.

Jose:  Maybe she was paying tribute to Faye. too?

Nathaniel:  I hope everyone is with her face plastered on all the posters. Incidentally she wore this dress to the premiere of Peter Chan's Wu Xia and the only unfortunate thing about inviting international fashion icons to your premiere is that your stars get ignored.

Jose:  Smart move in case everyone hates the movie, no?

Nathaniel:  Well sure but this movie stars Takeshi Kaneshiro, Kara Hui and Tang Wei and I haven't seen one photo of any of them, yet. And they were there as this video proves!!!

Jose:  Maybe they were hiding from the cameras under Sarah's ample dress.

Nathaniel: Heh. One thing that happens with celebrity photo feeds is if someone of SJP's fashion stature shows to any "smaller" event, the event is often completely ignored. Even in the headlines. It's weird.

Jose:  Shh, don't say that, people will hear you and SJP won't be invited to things anymore! I had no idea Tang Wei was in new movies. I had started to assume she'd pulled off a Falconetti on us and retired after Lust, Caution.

Fan Bingbing at the "The Tree of Life" premiereNathaniel: I always include Fan Bingbing in red carpet lineups because she really wears a deep groove in the Cannes carpet each year. I can't imagine the size of her luggage. How do you ship entire closets?

Jose:  I have no idea what this woman does for a living but being beautiful seems to be enough.

Nathaniel:  She's an actress, silly. I ignore the models and celebutantes, even when I like what they're wearing.

Jose: She was featured in every option of a "Best Dressed in Cannes" poll, the other day. Maybe entire fleets carry her dresses?

Nathaniel: She never seems to repeat colors styles fabrics. I think maybe mice and birds sew her into custom-made gowns each evening.

Jose:  Magic!  Must be hard being under so much sartorial pressure. No wonder she rarely smiles...

Nathaniel:  I had to include Mäiwenn Le Besco (Crouching Tigress) in the photo above.

Jose: Crouching Tigress, Obvious Drunkard! Girls seems to be enjoying her champagne. Who does that on a red carpet?

Mäiwenn ... actress, director, Diva PlavalagunaNathaniel: Heh. Maybe she's reminding everyone that she wields cameras these days. I saw her last movie The Actress' Ball and it was extremely self-indulgent but also intermittently hilarious and obsessed with actressing so I respect her. When I was interviewing Ludivine Sagnier last month that movie even came up.

I'm always secretly thrilled when Mäiwenn shows anywhere because I love explaning to people that she's the blue opera diva  from The Fifth Element and shocking them. Bam! Are you freaked?

Jose:  VERY. I always assumed that was a man!

I can't believe you're not letting me talk about Pé yet.

Nathaniel: Your wish is granted.

Jose:  Sigh. Nat, I kid you not. I didn't want her to do Cannes because I was afraid she'd disappoint me. Mrs. Bardem has been doing some weird ass red carpet choices, post baby Leo. But I'm actually in love with this.

  At first I thought she'd gone all out on Cannes (they love nudity there) and actually had had people paste tiny rocks and fabrics to her body.

Nathaniel:  Split opinion here. I think this color is three kinds of wrong on her. I'm not fond of nudity unless it's actually nudity.

Click to read more ...


links get physical. physical.

Let's divvy up our links into body types today. (yougottahaveagimmickifyouwanna...)

Bears  Gold Derby is wondering if Robin Williams can complete his EGOT in June at the Tony Awards. Maybe.
Invisible Woman a lot of sites are sharing this Cannes poster to your left. Faye Dunaway circa 1970 is the 64 year old festival's pinup mascot. Does this mean Cannes now views itself as a strangely tucked and surgeried unrecognizable version of its former self?
Tiny Princess
Deadline reveals that Tarsem Singh has cast 22 year old Lily Collins (Phil's daughter) as his Snow White (this is the competing project to the one with Kristen Stewart) instead of the rumored Saoirse Ronan. My guess is it's a good move since this is a sexy reimagining and Saoirse is only 16 (well 17 next week). Armie Hammer would've been robbing the cradle as Prince Charming.
Kenneth in the (212) has some smart words to the CMAs and People Magazine for their lame homophobic humor directed at Jake Gyllenhaal. For shame.

Drawn That Way Here is the new footage 4 minutes of Green Lantern. I'm still weirded out that even Ryan Reynold's god-like body is too imperfect to be used rather than CGI'ed. What hope is there left for mere mortals let alone increasingly frumpy bloggers who keep "forgetting" to go the gym! This doesn't change much for me in whether or not I think Green Lantern will be any good though the f/x do seem to have had a wee polish since that first trailer and that will be important to its reception.

The best addition from the original trailer is actually a subtraction: there's none of that hideously wooden dialogue between Reynolds and whasthsername as the generic love interest. But that said I didn't hate this new footage as much as Pajiba. I'm guessing that bile is bright green.

The Foreign Body Indie Wire reveals step two of China Lion's strategy towards real inroads into the US market for Chinese films.
Serious Film has an a-ma-zing visionary idea for the replacement director of The Wolverine.
Rapidly Aging Access Hollywood has an amusing interview bit with Reese Witherspoon, who is complaining about people viewing her as way too old for Robert Pattison in Water for Elephants.

Finally, Today's Must Read...

Voluptuous The Boston Globe Wesley Morris (such a fine writer) traces the evolution of the Actress's body from Elizabeth Taylor's voluptuousness to Christina Hendrick's Mad Men-only stardom. Inbetween notes on Jennifer Lopez, Kate Winslet, Penélope Cruz and Audrey Hepburn follow. I found the theories on Jane Fonda's evolution as a transitional figure fascinating.


Reader of the Day: Bill

For today's reader of the day meet Bill. You know him as "Billy Held an Oscar" in the comments. Enough with you 90s babies ;) Let's have a few earlier babies! Billy discovered The Film Experience through those now defunct Stinky Lulu Supporting Actress Smackdowns (RIP). I believe it had something to do with Maureen Stapleton, his favorite actress. So let's start there.

Billy Held THIS Oscar

Nathaniel: You got to hold Maureen Stapleton's actual Oscar for Reds (1981), right?
BILL:  Yup. Shortly before she passed away, I was able to spend an evening with her at home in Lenox, MA. A few years prior, I had created a site that detailed her career. As a result, a friend of Maureen's contacted me and asked if I would like to join him to visit her. It was truly wild. Maureen told me how she knew Humphrey Bogart and we talked about her role in 'Queen of the Stardust Ballroom'. The walls were adorned with autographed pictures, inscribed to her, from Clark Gable, Ethel Merman, JFK, Cary Grant, etc. If you looked to your left there was an Oscar, if you turned right there was an Emmy and a Tony, etc; Sensory overload. We also talked about our hometown (I grew up a few blocks from her childhood home). The best part of the evening was when Maureen's nurse came in and said, "Maureen, one of your films is on Turner Classic Movies". We watched as Robert Osborne introduced 'Bye Bye Birdie' and made mention of "future Oscar winner Maureen Stapleton". You don't have too many nights like that one in your lifetime.

I don't imagine, no. I mean, I can't imagine. Whose Oscar would I most like to hold in their presence? Hmmm.

Okay before Maureen there was... What's your first movie memory?
My first moviegoing experience was when my parents took me to see Grease. But my first movie obsession was Nine to Five. Having just seen The Electric Horseman on this new channel called HBO, I had fallen completely in love with Jane Fonda. Shortly thereafter, the television promos for Nine to Five aired and I was mesmerized. Jane Fonda, Dolly, and Edith Ann all in the same movie.

Fonda, Edith Ann, AND Dolly?I went through all of my grandmother's magazines (McCalls, Redbook, etc) and cut out any full-page ads I could find for the film; I checked the paper every day and clipped the 'Coming Soon' and 'Now Playing' ads too. Then I hung all the ads/clippings on my bedroom wall, along with a 'Nine to Five' sign that I made out of construction paper, and began campaigning for my parents to take me to see the film. I still have the ticket stub. 

Oh how I wish I'd kept my early ticket stubs. Did you ever dress up as a movie character for Halloween?
C-3PO. It was horrible. I hated it. Who I really wanted to be was the Bionic Woman but my parents killed that dream.

Are your coworkers aware of your movie addiction?
Coworkers are painfully aware that I am a huge movie fan. They know that the Oscars are a day of worship. I've run an Oscar pool at the office in years past. People really get into it. They research info online regarding the nominees and last year I had one co-worker attend a showing of all the nominated short films so he could cast an informed vote on his ballot.

In addition to Stapleton, I know you love The Bening. Any new actresses that are exciting you out there?
I still remember the rush I felt seeing The Bening in The Grifters and sadly, I haven't really had that rush with many of the younger actresses. Carey Mulligan came close in An Education, as did Emily Blunt in The Devils Wears Prada. For now, I am very happy devoting myself to Annette Bening and Maureen Stapleton. Another will come along ... I'm always on the lookout.



Fonda ♥ Bening

Quite a ringing endorsement of Annette Bening from two time Oscar winner and bonafide legend Jane Fonda. Celebrating the closing night of her acclaimed run in the play 33 Variations, Fonda shared several photos of celebrity attendees including Kathy Najimy, Forest Whitaker, Catherine Keener and this one...

"my favorite actor of all" eh? Fonda has good taste.

Now if only she'd get some good film projects and go for Oscar #3. Hey, maybe a co-starring role with The Bening? Why not?


Links Episode #2,011

Tang Wei acting againPop Matters Jane Fonda is here to talk fitness -- not the movies! Though the first question does both. Interesting interview from Matt Mazur.
Carpetbagger Sundance has a new 'it' girl Felicity Jones
Asia Scene visits Tang Wei on the set of her new film
Nicks Flick Picks kicks off his Best of 2010. Yay!
The Hollywood Reporter Anthony Hopkins for the Hitchcock bio? Ewww.
Pop Matters "10 things i'm already sick of in 2011" heh. some people can't ever be pleased.
Kenneth in the 212 Jake Gyllenhaal on the Q train. I love seeing celebrities in the subway. It's so rare. One spots them far more frequently above ground here in NYC.
Your Movie Buddy what... you don't wanna stay in the Star Gazer Suite from Blue Valentine? Why the hell not?

Finally, have you been reading all the pieces about whether or not The King's Speech can defeat The Social Network? Some subjects just take on a life of their own whether or not they're yet relevant. Some say it can, some say it can't but you know what I think it all comes down to? What their nomination tallies are like come Tuesday morning and how large The King's Speech's box office (and roughly parallel, the audience fervor) grows. These are the principle reasons why I haven't jumped into the debate. The competition for Oscar is an entirely different race, after the nominations. Don't you think?

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