Monday, June 18, 2012


Why is actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus succeeding where others have failed?

Actor Jason Alexander and actor Michael Richards, who played George and Kramer on SEINFELD, have starred in new shows that didn't succeed. Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who was Elaine Benes in SEINFELD, and Christine in THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE (a hit series for six years), is more famous now than she was ten years ago.

Is it luck? Or something about Julia Louis-Dreyfus, the real woman, the actress that is very special?

The loveable FRIENDS have appeared in new shows. Actors Courteney Cox, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, and Lisa Kudrow have starred in shows that weren't hits though Cox's COUGAR TOWN is on the air. Jennifer Aniston stars in movies though they aren't really smash hits. Her films sell plenty of tickets and get good reviews, but Aniston's looks and her love life get the headlines.

What about big-name movie stars who have played memorable roles in major films?

I think major movies and major stars are a different world. Is it the size of the screen, or the hugeness of their fame? Their names stay with us even if they're retired, or are no longer alive. We love them, but we don't know them or get attached to them the way we get attached to TV stars.

Anyhow, Elaine/Christine/Julia Louis-Dreyfus, is now the the star on HBO's new show VEEP, and as the "Veep," for me she is still the person I know from the other shows -- self-centered, (not repulsively so), practical, amusing, realistic, and quick-minded smart. Whatever her mood, her gestures, bearing and tone are real. She's believable. She reacts to what other people say or do -- reacts always as herself -- as the Julia Louis-Dreyfus that I know.

I don't think of her ever as an actress playing a part. I think, "Hey, I know the real woman." I care about what's happening to her.

That's special.

Who would you add to this list? (This isn't a favorite actress list.) Who, when you see her on a screen, do YOU like and truly believe?

Here's Julia with Dave Letterman, being herself, looking like herself, not playing a part or promoting herself, or avoiding any subject, just being the gal I like and have watched grow older as I have grown older .


Peggy Bechko said...

Great clip.

Anonymous said...

I love Julia! She is so happy, energetic, funny, and down to earth. I enjoy all the shows she is on, although I don't get HBO to watch her in VEEP. I think it is her cleverness and beaming personality that has kept her a major star! thanks for sharing this.

Anonymous said...

This is a terrific piece, Em. You have an incredible instinct.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus is a jewel. She has the ability to think on her feet; a fast brain mouth connection. Some people can take years to think of a witticism or retort. These people become writers.
Celebs have a hard time on twitter, because they're overwhelmed by all their followers. I sure don't have that problem!
What actress, when I see on screen, do I really like and believe?
Amanda Tapping and Sandra Bullock come immediately to mind. But there are many others; talented women with whom it is a joy to share a story.
@louise3anne on twitter
Louise Sorensen

Maureen Jacobs said...

My list includes, but not limited to,

Lucille Ball
Betty White
Mariska Hargitay
Helen Mirren
Cate Blanchett
Tina Fey

On Twitter

Angela said...

She's the best actress ever, she's been lucky, but she is very talented! she can play any role perfectly and she's adorable and hot! :)

Linda Phillips said...

Love Julia! Thanks for this terrific post. It made my day.