"The Sisters Brothers" spins a unique Western yarn                "Colette" is another period piece showcase for Kiera Knightley                John C. Reilly looks like a late breaking Academy Award player in the Trailer for "Stan & Ollie"                Brie Larson saves the day in the First Trailer for "Captain Marvel"                The Toronto International Film Festival boosts "Green Book" with its Top Prize                Updated Academy Award predictions for early September                "White Boy Rick" is a compelling character study and period piece                Taking a look at potential Best Supporting Actress contenders                Shane Black gives "The Predator" his signature clever spin                Venice Film Festival award winners include "The Favourite" and "Roma"                Taking a look at potential Best Supporting Actor contenders                Watch out for Ben Foster in Best Supporting Actor for "Leave No Trace"                "The Favourite" releases a new Trailer to build off of its positive festival buzz                "All About Nina" and "Fahrenheit 11/9": Films to look forward to in September                Trailer for "The Front Runner" and Buzz from Telluride suggest another Oscar player for Jason Reitman        

George Clooney talks aging, being a “character actor” – AWARDS ALLEY


By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Brad Pitt mentioned it in a recent EW.com cover story: He was glad to be past the “pretty face” stage of his career because he found aging more interesting.

There’s a “Benjamin Button” joke in there somewhere. But his comments shine a light on a distinct problem still plaguing Hollywood. How do actors continue to find engaging parts as they grow older? Warren Beatty, Clint Eastwood and Robert Redford moved behind the camera. Other stars began producing passion projects in an effort to carve out memorable parts.

In this week’s Parade cover story, “Ides of March” and “Descendants” star George Clooney addressed the issue with his trademark brand of self-deprecating humor, calling himself “a character actor” at this stage of his career.

“I look at myself onscreen and go, ‘I don’t look like I did when I was 40 — I know that,'” Clooney said. “The people I’ve respected most in the industry over the years — Paul Newman, for instance. I just loved the way he handled growing old onscreen.”

But those who’ve seen Alexander Payne’s “The Descendants” — specifically Clooney’s layered performance as a disheveled yet well-meaning father — also understand that the actor probably couldn’t have delivered as compelling a performance had he tried to play Matt King, say, 10 years ago. The actor’s life experiences continue to inform his decisions in front of the camera. He knows when to be quiet, when to rise up to a scene, and when to listen to the actors in his scene.

Clooney’s work behind the camera, which started in 2002 with the underrated “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind,” probably also has helped him refine his acting techniques. But at this stage, as evidenced with his fantastic political drama “The Ides of March,” Clooney’s also just an outstanding talent scout, and he’s great at picking strong support in key roles.

As for “Ides,” Clooney revealed to Parade why he had to wait to get the film in front of audiences.

“We were in preproduction on this film in 2007, before the Obama election,” he said. “And then we realized that a good portion of the country was elated with what happened in that election, so we had to shelve the movie until people were cynical again.

“I didn’t think it would be quite this quick,” he added with a laugh.

“Ides” will be in theaters on Oct. 7.

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