The Los Angeles Times from Los Angeles, California on August 4, 1990 · Page 296
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The Los Angeles Times from Los Angeles, California · Page 296

Los Angeles, California
Issue Date:
Saturday, August 4, 1990
Page 296
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F2 SAIUKDAY. AUCIUST 4. I WO SI) .os an(ii:i.:s i i.Mi:s SATURDAY LETTERS Faces . . . Roseanne Barr's Rendition of 'The Star-Spangled Banner' Winfield: The Trials of an Actor As soon as Paul Winfield completed Scott Turow's best seller "Presumed Innocent" three years ago, he became an actor obsessed. He informed his agent that if and when the film version of the thriller was made, he had to have the juicy role of the charming, crafty Judge Larren Lyttle. For the next Wi years, Winfield pursued the part before he got it in the critically acclaimed film, which stars Harrison Ford. "Maybe two days would go by when I wouldn't think about it," says the Oscar- and Emmy-nominated actor of "Sounder" and "King" fame. As soon as he learned that Alan J. Pakula had been signed to direct, Winfield "knocked on his door. I heard through the casting person he wasn t familiar with my work," he says. So, he kept setting up meetings and sending Pakula tickets to see "Checkmates," the play he was starring in on Broadway. For some reason or another, Pakula always canceled. "I was getting manic about it," says Winfield. Finally, he met with Pakula here in Los Angeles. "My agents said at this point in my career I shouldn't audition, but just chitchat," he says. "I would rather come in and read and let them know how I would approach the part. I would feel much better then if I didn't get the part. Otherwise I'd think I'd failed chitchat." Six months later, Pakula finally told him the role of Lyttle was his. "The character was so well-written in the book," says Winfield, "you really have a vivid impression of what he is like. But when I got the screenplay, all you were left with was his dialogue. It was a real shock to me. I said to myself, 'How am I going to make these four scenes work?' " Meeting with three black judges in New York and Detriot helped him flesh out Lyttle. The Detriot judge even allowed Winfield to wear judicial robes and sit on the bench while court was in session. "We worked and it was work for three hours," recalls Winfield. "I began to realize it takes a special kind of listening, a concentrated listening that is very exhausting. The most important thing I learned was the kind of power you get when you put those robes on and you sit on that elevated bench. Something happens." SUSAN KING Rick Dean: The Theater Habit Rick Dean chuckles as he watches his 20-month-old daughter, Eliza, cavort in his Hollywood living room. "Having a kid," he says, trying to sum up the experience, "it's a lot of fun." Then, he sighs: "It's a lot of work, too." Dean could be talking about his life in the theater right now. On Thursday and Friday, he plays a kiddie-park attendant in John Steppling's "Storyland," at the Padua Hills Playwrights' Festival. On the weekends, he takes his place as a trailer-park dweller in his own staging of Steppling's "Neck" at the Lost Studio on La Brea. "The killer was playing 'Neck' at 8 at night, then racing to Cal State Northridge Padua's home and rehearsing 'Storyland,'" says Dean, whose Dallas accent adorns his deep, gruff voice. ROBERT DUUELL Los Angeles Times Rick Dean directs and acts in Steppling's play "Neck." 'This is definitely your version.' Dean, 34, has no second thoughts about his grueling schedule (he also does the typical L.A. actor's daily grind of tryouts and tests at the studios) except for directing himself on stage. "I'm almost more confident as a director than as an actor," he adds. "Deep down inside, I feel like I still don't know how to act, even after 17 years of work and study. Each script has its own difficulties, so it's always like starting over." Not all of those scripts are good, he'll admit, especially the low-budget variety he'll take on to support his theater habit (he's acted in no less than six as-yet-unreleased movies in the last two years). "If you work on a movie that's really bad, you tend to forget how to act. That's what my friends who do a lot of TV tell me. Acting is weird enough without that." ROBERT KOEHLER Ashbrook: The Boyfriend From Hell If Dana Ashbrook knows who killed Laura Palmer on ABC's cult series, "Twin Peaks," which just garnered 14 Emmy nominations and begins reruns Sunday at 9 p.m., he's certainly not going to spill the beans. "You can draw your own conclusions," says the actor who plays Bobby, the odious boyfriend of the late homecoming queen. He himself barely escaped being axed to death in the series' cliffhanger. The 22-year-old Ashbrook plays an equally sleazy teen-ager in bill uospy s comedy teature, "Ghost Dad." "I'm the guy who is trying to get Kimberly Russell who plays Cosby's daughter into bed," he explains. "Since Bill is a ghost and hears me say all of this to her, he tries to strangle me." Ashbrook made "Ghost Dad" just before reporting to work on "Twin Peaks." The series' casting director recommended him to David Lynch and Mark Frost, the show's creators. "I met with them," he says, "and then I worked with David on the part. David is very down-to-earth. He really isn't weird." Born in San Diego, Ashbrook grew up in an acting family. His father is a college drama professor, and his mother and two older sisters are actresses. Ashbrook moved to Los Angeles four years ago, two weeks after graduating from high school to seek his fame and fortune in Hollywood. He had some lean times, though, before getting acting jobs. "I sold hosiery at Robinson's," he recalls with a smile. "A friend who owned an exercise store gave me a reference. I had never had a job. but I did know hosiery. It was funny, the reactions I would get. Women would ask, 'Is there anyone else in the department?' I would say, 'No, honey, it's just me. What do you need, babe?' " SUSAN KING THEODORA I.ITSIOS Paul Winfield is Judge Larren Lyttle in "Presumed Innocent.' We tried to rehearse during the day, but just try it in 110-degree heat!" Wasn't Dean pushing things a bit, attempting to put his own mark on one Steppling play without the involvement of the playwright (known for insisting on directing his own work) and, at the same time, acting for him in another? "I was scared of what he would think," admits Dean, who previously acted in Steppling's "My Crummy Job" at the Mark Taper Forum's New Works Festival. "But I wanted to please myself first. It was better not having him around while directing." Steppling's verdict? "He liked it. He also said to me, JIMHUDE1.SON Dana Ashbrook of "Twin Peaks" is featured in "Ghost Dad." Re "The Night Roseanne Sang at the Grand Old Game," Jack Mathews' July 28 article on Roseanne Barr singing the national anthem: Mathews asks, "Did Barr think Americans are so smitten with her lovable slob image that they'd enjoy the national anthem scratched on a blackboard?" Several years ago when Robert Goulet forgot the words of "The Star-Spangled Banner," a few people gasped and life went on. If Barr were a male comic, the audience would have cheered! Let's get off the double standard! MARIANNE DELLA MARNA Alta Loma Barr failed to realize that her fans who eat "ketchup on white bread" become angry when anyone insults our flag or national anthem. Like Gabor, Trump and Hart, Barr suffers from the fatal flaw of hubris. MARY E. HANSON Whittier If I were Francis Scott Key, y'know, I'd rise up out of my grave, y'know, and smack Barr across her ever-lovin' chops, y'know. WILLIAM S. KOESTER Upland Did Roseanne point a gun at anybody and steal his Rolex? The real disgust, in this reader's view, is the reaction from the fans and the holier-than-thou rantings of scribes and broadcasters. STEPHEN C. Da COSTA Warner Springs TheNewMurrow Regarding "Who Will Be the '90s Edward R. Murrow?" (July 28): How dare Calendar include a picture of Geraldo Rivera as a possible candidate! Rivera deals in sleaze and could not possibly compare to Murrow. As to Dan Rather, he acts like a high-school kid who is not used to wearing a suit. Jane Pauley is cutesy, but hardly of the intellectual capacity of an Ed Murrow. "A stunning film. It Is an extraordinarily exciting adventure. It Is a tilm not to be missed." The Hollywood A .neporiBr. NOW SHOWING SiS UNI VERSA t SAT. B Two Thumbs Up!" iapuin noon "Don't Have A Cow! Junior Is My Kinda Dude!" - Bart Simpson "This Kid Gives Freddy "This Is A Cut-Up! -Jison IIVM PIMESm ulMff imm"m mm Kid A 7" Real .X VSP J Mask-. .iwn "2DfUCOT uumirtc wranntuuic niiciu i nuwtwn taua- &! WESTWOOD Monn fioowil (213)208-3Z59 OAILYICO.3.15, 5 30,7.45. 1000 LATE SHOW FRI&SAM200 rourwooo Hottywood Pocrfic (213) 464-4111 DAILY -12.40. 2.40, 4 40, 0 40, 8 40. 10 40 SCREEN 1 -1 00. 3 10, 5 20. 7.30. 10 00 IHB LATE SHOW FHI & SAI SC1EEN2- 1 30.3 40, 5 40. B 00. 10 15 ALKAUBRA Etfwords AJhomtwa Ploco (618) 281 980 ARCADIA GCC Sonlo Arila (818) 4456200 A2USA Effwotds AJUSO. Dfrvo-ln (816)9690263 AIUSA Edwards foolhil Center (818) 9699632 BURSA HK AMC Burton 10 (818) 9539800 CERRITOS United Artists Moll arc (213)974 7776 CHAISWORTH Pocific's Winnatkrj Owe In (818) 3496806 CHINO AMC Town Squaio 10 (714)590-7400 CITY OF INDUSTRY POCifSs Vinelond Dtrvo In (818)961 9767 CORONA Edwards Corona 1 1 (714)7791160 COVINA SoColSfoi (818) 3370050 CYPRESS Fcm ry Twin Oramo (714)878 1660 GARDEN A Pacific's Vwmonl Drrvoln (213) 3234055 GLENDALE Pocrftc'S HMjoncy (aft) 2466363 HERUOSA BEACH AMC Her mo SO 6 (213)318-8000 HIGHLAND PARK Highland (713) 756 6383 LAHIRADA Poof-cs Gotewoy (714) 573 1611 LONG BEACH AMC :5 ECCEPIEP Peter Jennings looks too much like Julio Iglcsias, and I expect him to break out in song at any moment. Oprah Winfrey has allowed herself to get mired like Rivera. Ted Koppel is the closest to Murrow, but he now appears to be bored. Who then, you may ask, is a candidate to replace Murrow? There still is no one who can compare. As to Murrow, his only mistake was being stupid enough to smoke himself to death at an early age. I still miss him. RICHARD H. SMITH Burbank Murrow was a creator; he invented investigative TV journalism. Comparison of this giant with the mental midgets mentioned in Rick Du Brow's article is preposterous. Du Brow should be ashamed of himself. JIM VERDIECK Thousand Oaks Along with Koppel, Robert Mac-Neil of "MacNeilLehrer News-Hour" is TV's best interviewer. LAWRENCE GALIZIO Bel-Air The Message of 'SEALS' Concerning "The Woman Behind 'Navy SEALS,' " (July 25): Radical feminist cum producer Brenda Feigen states, "I'm glad I lost that election she ran for a New York Senate seat or I might still be in Albany instead of having produced my first film." Just imagine the horror Feigen would still be in Albany were it not for the opportunity to use her feminist talents to produce another male-bonding, action-adventure flick to add to the summer glut. DAVID KRAMER Los Angeles To see a film like "Navy SEALS" defended by someone proclaiming to be a radical feminist is dizzying. What is the message Feigen brings to our youth? That it's OK to maim another human being as long as you're able to spend as much time on your hair as 'BREATHTAKING" PATHFINDER Film By NILS GA VP AN I.1M:.X. Rlil.HASli LAEMMLE S MONICA SANTA MONICA 1332 2nd St. 394-9741 STUDIOS TOUR . Me Nightmares!" Krueger Wish He Were N Son! Darth Vader nilmJOHl fill! mm QiMrwoMtwR; CffflURY CTTY AMC Century 14 (213) 5534900 SCREEN 1 10 10, 12 30. 2.50,5 00. 7.40. 10 05 SCREEN 2-11:10, 1 '30. 4. 15. 6 50,9 30 4 nous Ireo voWotod porting win I eke I purchase. (213) 652-7760 12 00 MARINA DEL REY Unrled Artists (213)823-3959 MORENO VALLEY EdworOs Festival IBS (714) 485-2000 MORENO VALLEY Edwords TownGate (714)653 1000 NORTH HOLLYWOOD Century 7 UK (8I8)50SCC4 NORTHRIDGE Pacific's flortnndgc Cinemas (818)993-1711 ORANGE Century (JI4)634 7S)fi3 ORANGE SloOum Drive-In (714) 633 8770 PASADENA Untod Artists (213)681-5171 PtCO RIVERA Pacific's Ties la Drrvfln (213) 948-3671 PUENTE HILLS PuoflteMan 10 (818)8105566 ROLLING HILLS AMC Rolling Hi Is (213)3766511 SANTA MONICA Craplai Odeon flroodwny Cinemas (713)458-1506 SHERMAN OAKS GCC (618) 986-9660 TORRANCE United Artists DalAmo (213)542-7383 TUJUNGA Conyon (818)3520693 "VENTURA Century 8 (805)644-5666 WOODLAND HILLS GCC DOPING THIS EHGUGF-Uf HI I mi Charlie Sheen docs? ROBERT HANSON Burbank While Feigen has fought against the stereotypes women are burdened with, she has not discovered that men are also the victims of society's most violent stereotypes. Does she care that some young men will see "Navy SEALS" and decide that they must join so they can prove their worth? Does she care that innocent women and children would undoubtedly be killed in an attack such as depicted in "Navy SEALS"? No. She only cares that the one white woman in the film is depicted well. DON HAYASHI Culver City Age and Sex Appeal In her July 27 review of "Presumed Innocent" Sheila Benson writes: "Surely no reader of the book is going to quibble that . . . Carolyn Polhemus has dropped a dozen or so years and a teen-age son to become Greta Scacchi not when that actress' measured glance and apricot-colored skin could spark lust from granite." Well, this reader surely does object. The character in the book was a complex woman in her 40s, unlike Scacchi's vacuous sex kitten. I can recall virtually no Ameri "TWO THUMBS UP! A DELIGHTFULLY ORIGINAL COMEDY." -SISKEL & EBERT "BRANDO AND BRODERICK BREAK FRESH AND FUNNY COMIC GROUND." -David Sfworun, KNBC-TV NOW SHOWING AT THESE SAN DIEGO THEATRES AMC FASHION VALLEY 4 Fashion Valley Center West Ot Nordstrom's 291-4404 Edwards FLOWER HILL 2630 Via De La Valle Del Mar 755-5511 Edwards MIRA MESA 8118 Mlra Mesa Blvd. Mlra Mesa 566-1912 Mann OCEANSIDE 8 El Camlno Real At Hwy. 78 Oceanslde 439-7008 Mann UNIVERSITY TOWNE CENTER 4525 La Jolla Village Drive La Jolla 452-7766 Pacific's CINERAMA 6 THEATRES University Ave. West of College 287-8990 NOW SHOWING AT THESE SAN DIEGO THEATRES Mann OCEANSIDE 8 El Camino Real At Hwy. 78 Oceanslde 439-7008 UNITED ARTISTS CHULA VISTA 6 320 Third Avenue Chula Vista 425-7600 UNITED ARTISTS MOVIES 8 Del Notle Plaza Escondldo 745-4470 BUOU THEATRE 5th & G Downtown 235-6084 COLLEGE THEATRE El Cajon Blvd. Al 63rd 286-1455 EL CAJON 330 Main SI El Cajon 440-9970 nniDOLByggOj' SOPHY. can movies in the last five years in which an over-40 female character had even a modest love scene. (Actresses like Fonda and Hawn skirt the issue by playing "ageless.") In contrast, male characters in their 50s and even 60s routinely are given love interests young enough to be their daughters. Let me see if I understand this, Hollywood: Men are inherently desirable no matter what their age, but women turn sexless after 40. This double standard is misogy-nistic poppycock and says more about the insecurities of the filmmakers than it does about the women they're ignoring. SARAH LOWDER Los Angeles A Warners First About "The Run on Robin Hood," July 26: If "The Adventures of Robin Hood" of 1938 was Warner's first Technicolor release, then who released "God's Country and the Woman" in 1937? "Robin Hood of El Dorado" was about Mexican bandit Joaquin Murietta. And because Kevin Costner is now reusing the title "Prince of Thieves," it would have been worthwhile to mention the 1948 release, which starred John Hall. Picayune maybe, but look, you're writing for Hollywood! BILL WOLFE Hollywood "HILARIOUS!" -nk Cirner, GANNETT NEWS "BRANDO IS TO 'THE FRESHMAN' WHAT NICHOLSON WAS TO 'BATMAN.' HE'S HILARIOUS." Jiihn Corcoran, KCAL-TV "WITTY AND WONDERFUL WITH MARLON BRANDO BETTER THAN EVER! THIS 'FRESHMAN' MAKES THE DEAN'S LIST" -PjI Collins, WWOR-TV UNITED ARTISTS CHULA VISTA 6 320 Third Avenue Chula Vista 425-7600 UNITED ARTISTS GLASSHOUSE 6 3156 Sports Arena Blvd. 223-2546 UNITED ARTISTS HORTON PLAZA 7 324 Horton Plaza Center 234-4661 UNITED ARTISTS MOVIES 8 Del Norte Plaza Escondldo 745-4470 PARKWAY TRIPLEX 1286 Fletcher Pkwy. El Cajon '449-7800 SORBV.NCm!iESACCfMtOFORIHI!INSA6MNT ' J '" DOLBY STEREO STRAND THEATRE 4950 Newport Ave Ocean Beach 223-3141 STUDIO THEATRE 827 Palm Ave. Imperial Beach 429-1082 VALLEY DRIVE-IN 3840 Mission Avenue Oceanslde 757-5556 NO PASS! S ACCEPTED fOB THIS IHGAGIME W SD. B4

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