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Was he or she "robbed"?

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Did you ever watch a classic era actor or actress whose talent and intelligence were clearly greater than any role that they ever had a chance to play?

 

As an example, Van Heflin had a few good parts, such as those characters he played in "Johnny Eager" and "Act of Violence", but for most of his decades-long career, he was obviously better than the material that he was given to act in. I'd love to hear your observations about this.

 

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even though Claude Raines was one of the greatest actors

ever I don't think that he ever got the leading roles

that actors with half his talent got. He always seemed to be second in line in most(if not all) of the films that I have seen him in.

Eddie

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Funny, moira. As I was watching one of the wonderful obscure TCM film noirs today, 'Crime By Night', I was thinking the exact same thing about Jerome Cowan.

 

Jerome WHO????

 

Yup, you've seen him a gazillion times...he was in 138 films and made 57 television appearances...but he absolutely delighted in this film. His timing was impeccable, his delivery was spot on, and he even did a darned good job of 'getting the girl'...in this case Jane Wyman.

 

And you are correct, both Van Heflin AND Van Johnson were better than their material. I personally love to focus on the second string actors, to me they flesh out a movie and without them the 'stars' would be talking to their reflections in a mirror.

 

A personal case in point is Clark Gable, almost as much of a non-actor (he is simply a 'star') as John Wayne. My opinion, mind you, and I don't advocate burning any films that Clark Gable is in.......:)

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