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  Acting his age
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   Author  Topic: Acting his age  (Read 1356 times)
Caz
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Acting his age
« on: September 11, 2005, 11:27:47 am »



By MICHAEL KANE
Sun Sep 11, 2005

They always go together: "wide-eyed" and "innocent."

You can't have one without the other.

Elijah Wood's got the wide eyes, for sure - those famously big,
round, crystal-blue peepers of his. So, until he starts showing up on
set in sunglasses, he'll have that innocent thing going, too.
"Plus, I don't exactly look my age," jokes the boyish 24-year-old,
whose newly grown-in chin stubble and 6-inch sideburns make him look
a little like a high-school senior with beer-buying aspirations.

Wood was in Midtown last week to talk about his two new
releases, "Green Street Hooligans," which opened two days ago,
and "Everything is Illuminated," which opens this coming Friday.
The former is the split-lip adventures of an American swept up in the
East London world of pubs and soccer punch-ups. The latter is the
quiet, quirky tale of a young man's search for the Ukrainian mystery
woman who saved his grandfather from the Nazis.

But both films follow in the sure-fire storytelling tradition
of "Candide," Mark Twain and "E.T." - take an innocent and send him
abroad.

And who could be more innocent than the saucer-eyed Wood?
"In many of my roles, I'm taken on some sort of journey," he says.
Wood's been landing these hit-the-road movies ever since he left
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, at age 8 with his mom to audition at an L.A.
talent showcase.

That's all the way from his breakthrough in 1994's "North," as an
ignored little kid who roams the planet in search of new parents, to
the epic "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, as a hobbit who treks Middle
Earth to fling a pernicious piece of jewelry into the fires of Mount
Doom.

So, after 16 years of what amounts to a series of on-location working
vacations, does Wood even have a home?

"I bought a house by the beach in L.A. in October," he says, "but
it's kind of a mess. I haven't unpacked yet. Everything's still in
boxes."

That's 11 months, Elijah.

"Part of it is that there's not a lot of built-in storage," he says,
unconvincingly.

Stacked on the floor and atop an eclectic mix of modern and old
craftsman furniture in his Venice Beach house are cardboard boxes
full of books, CDs, DVDs and video games. One of those boxes is even
stuffed with "Lord of the Rings" mementos like Frodo's sword, the
ring and some prosthetic hobbit feet.

"I guess it's true," he says, "L.A. is home. It's where my mom and
brother and sister live. It's where my friends are, and it's where I
go when I'm not working. But something I haven't done in my life is
to define my own space. I don't get properly settled. I get
distracted."

He also gets work, plenty of it.

After taking the lead in "Everything is Illuminated," the Liev
Schreiber-directed adaptation of a best-selling novel by young author
Jonathan Safran Foer, Wood jetted off to the Czech Republic for two
months.

He rented an apartment on a narrow little lane in Prague's Old Town
Square.

"It was such a cool experience learning to adapt and get along with
people that can't relate to you,"he says. "Other than the tourists,
most of the people don't recognize you. Plus, nobody there speaks
much English."

Especially not the cute Czech barmaid who worked downstairs from
Elijah's apartment.

"After work I'd often come down and get a takeaway pizza and a couple
of beers. It was a great place, just locals hanging out there," he
says. "Anyway, I'd have these little moments of shared recognition,
these interactions with this one barmaid.

"Chatting her up was impossible, but it's beautiful when you can
actually speak without using language. Finally, one night she sat
down for a half-hour, and we spoke through, like, three other people.
I was being translated to Czech, and she was being translated to
English."

So, did it work?

"I wasn't really flirting," he says. "I was genuinely interested in
asking her where she was from and what she was studying in school and
other things."

Right, uh-huh. So, did it work?

"Also, another interesting thing when you're a foreigner in a place
like Prague is learning how cabbies try and stiff you for money," he
says, making a sharp turn in the conversation and stiffing us on the
barmaid story. "They'll tell you 200 Czech crowns and then take a
long route and charge you, like, 500 crowns."

"Everything is Illuminated" director Schreiber says Wood was a
perfect fit to play Jonathan, an awkward and confused young American
who travels to the Ukraine countryside in search of identity.

"I wanted someone who was diminutive and vulnerable and innocent,"
says the first-time director. "He had to be someone you would want to
help. That was an articulation of an American character that I felt
the rest of the world was unfamiliar with, and Elijah embodies all of
that to me.

"Also, when you have a character who's primarily an observer, the
eyes are very important. They say that eyes are the portal to the
soul, and Elijah's got garage doors."

His work in "Green Street Hooligans," in addition to sending him off
to England and teaching him West Ham United fight songs, also offered
Wood a new acting opportunity.

As his timid Yank transplant, Matt Buckner, falls in with East London
soccer yobs and starts throwing punches outside West Ham matches,
it's as if Wood himself is taking a shot at shedding the perception
of boyish innocence.

The black eyes help, too.

"That transition fascinated me, the responsibility of making the arc
believable, that's the challenge," he says. "My interest is moving
into a position where I'm perceived as more of an adult."
Wood recently contributed his voice to the animated penguin
movie "Happy Feet" and signed on for a small part in a film
called "Bobby" that Emilio Estevez is directing about intertwining
stories all taking place in L.A.'s Ambassador Hotel the night Robert
F. Kennedy was killed. He's also in the early pre-production stages
of an Iggy Pop biopic, in which he's slated to play the punk legend.
Otherwise, Wood plans on spending the next few leisurely months
thumbing through scripts and checking out rock bands for his planned
start-up label Simian Records.

Basically, he's on vacation.

So, what's Wood got planned? How about a foreign getaway, maybe?

Forget it. He's going home to unpack

http://www.nypost.com/entertainment/52545.htm

Elijah, I can help you unpack!
« Last Edit: September 11, 2005, 01:20:52 pm by Carina » Report to moderator   Logged
Solskie
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2005, 11:44:46 am »

LOL, that was really great! but whats that link, it doesn't seem to work?
Great stuff as always, esp that barmaid story and the unpacking. I like the way this article was written. Thanks for the link.
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2005, 11:51:38 am »

I want to help too, I am very good in unpacking and cleaning and decorating. Pretty perfect, you know
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Galadriel Lady of the Wood
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2005, 11:51:48 am »


Quote from: Solskie on September 11, 2005, 11:44:46 am   

LOL, that was really great! but whats that link, it doesn't seem to work?

Working on that, I took it out for now.

Great stuff as always, esp that barmaid story and the unpacking. I like the way this article was written. Thanks for the link.

You're very welcome. I particularly liked those two anecdotes as well.


Quote from: Galadriel OLC on September 11, 2005, 11:51:38 am   

I want to help too, I am very good in unpacking and cleaning and decorating. Pretty perfect, you know

We can help together, what do you say?
« Last Edit: September 11, 2005, 11:52:49 am by Carina » Report to moderator   Logged
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2005, 11:55:53 am »

Carina I say, lets take the next flight to L.A. and help the man
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Galadriel Lady of the Wood
Caz
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2005, 12:14:13 pm »


Quote from: Galadriel OLC on September 11, 2005, 11:55:53 am   

Carina I say, lets take the next flight to L.A. and help the man

Good idea!! He's in serious need of help! And after we're done, we'll watch Green Street and EII at the cinema, and then we'll stroll over to "The Bar" to watch him DJ!!
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2005, 12:56:48 pm »

it's a german trait, you know, to unpack, clean, and get organized.  therefore, i will be helping too. 
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Caz
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2005, 01:18:08 pm »

Wonderful Nettie, we could use your help!
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2005, 01:23:47 pm »

that really is a great article.  i like it when he talks about other things, other than what the movies are about, because we already know all that.  so the little personal stories about boxes piled up, etc, are cute.
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Caz
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2005, 01:37:08 pm »

I agree Nettie, it makes a nice change.
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2005, 02:02:15 pm »

Lol, I can just imagine it in help wanted:

"Loyal fangirls needed to help procrastinating actor unpack his house."
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2005, 02:30:32 pm »


Quote from: Mushee on September 11, 2005, 02:02:15 pm   

Lol, I can just imagine it in help wanted:

"Loyal fangirls needed to help procrastinating actor unpack his house."

hehehe,  you are too funny!
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2005, 03:02:01 pm »

Hate to say this girls but that what Pam should be doing.
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2005, 03:32:28 pm »

yes, she should.  but apparently, she must not be. 
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Caz
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Re:Acting his age
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2005, 05:45:37 pm »


Quote from: Mushee on September 11, 2005, 02:02:15 pm   

Lol, I can just imagine it in help wanted:

"Loyal fangirls needed to help procrastinating actor unpack his house."

You've got a great sense of humour!!


Quote from: LillyAsh1717 on September 11, 2005, 03:02:01 pm   

Hate to say this girls but that what Pam should be doing.

I'm sorry but I don't agree. We're joking about cleaning his house but in reality, it's Elijah who should be doing this first and foremost, not all alone of course, she can help him, but it's not her job to clean his house.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2005, 05:47:37 pm by Carina » Report to moderator   Logged
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