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Love for Acting

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With acting his true love, the lesson that Douglas would like to learn at this phase of his career has to do with allowing himself to be "creatively selfish," to think a little bit more like an actor and a little bit less like a producer.

"I tend to think in terms of the movie as a whole, first. I want to make good movies, which, as an actor, I'll be a part of. But sometimes I cut myself short as far as an actor is concerned. I don't get a chance to be as selfish as I want to be because I'm always trying to make it work for everybody else. While a writer is alone with their word processor, or a painter is alone in a studio, or a musician is working on a song, movie making is a big kind of collaborative family. Certainly it starts with the written word, but then it becomes a collaborative art and that process never ceases to amaze me. It's almost mystical. It's something that is really alive and fresh.

"I think for me, my success was in two very distinct phases. One was obviously producing Cuckoo's Nest, and the other – winning an Oscar at 31. Unlike an average profession, acting usually comes in concentrated doses. When you're an actor, it's anywhere from two and a half to five months of intense work and then it's done. That's the hardest part of filmmaking. There is no audience response, so you really don't get any immediate satisfaction," says Douglas.

Drawbacks of Fame

One of the pitfalls of celebrity is an insatiable and intrusive tabloid press. Recently, Douglas's private life has been its target. "I try to protect myself a little bit from a certain amount of public scrutiny. And when you protect yourself, you pay a price, particularly from the tabloids. We have a phenomenon today that did not exist in my father's generation. They had polite gossip columnists, nothing like what goes on now. There was a civilized quality rather than this 'take no prisoners' attitude, and I'm disturbed by it. They want to follow me around, stalk me with 600-millimeter lenses. They even have people who will go through my trash."

Another drawback of fame is that it insulates a celebrity from making new friends. Most of Michael Douglas's friends have been close to him for more than 30 years, which speaks well of him; but he grapples with wanting to create some new alliances.


As the first stars of the evening begin shimmering on the horizon, Douglas takes the last puff of his cigar. "The hardest thing for me is to find the next picture that I want to do. I never know what my next picture is going to be. And I'm pretty fortunate in that way, because it allows me to follow my instincts. I love to act. And my job is to give the audience something that they want. And I don't know what's going to come next and sometimes it makes me a little nervous and antsy, but that's really just part of the fun."




50 The text contains a few words with challenging pronunciation. Transcribe the following words to avoid possible mispronunciation and miscommunication in future.

philandering, accolade, eluded, blatant, eschews, genre, depraved, condoned, idyllic, khakis, aquamarine, celluloid, recalcitrant, disenfranchised, presumptuous, insatiable

51 Explain the meanings and give examples of usage of the following words from the text above. Use the chart below.

# Word Meaning(s) Example of usage other than in the text

epitome, accolade, elude, typecast, ambivalent, imbue, latitude, ambiguous, cast (v.), infatuation

52 Translate the sentences making use of the vocabulary from the previous exercise?

1. Отримати роль в епізоді було надзвичайним розчаруванням. 2. Захоплення драматургією врешті привело її на кінознімальний майданчик. 3. Пошук нових експресивних засобів у музиці приніс групі схвальні відгуки критики. 4. Він почав новий проект з цілковитою впевненістю, що на цей раз успіх його не обійде стороною. 5. До цієї пропозиції у пана Брука складалося двояке ставлення: з одного боку, це було підвищення, а з іншого він ніяк не уявляв себе на цій роботі. 6. Щоразу зустріч з образотворчим мистецтвом сповнювала її почуттям краси і витонченості. 7. Він міг би пройти співбесіду якби не остання не цілком зрозуміла відповідь щодо його попереднього роботодавця. 8. Вона росла в оточенні, де тато був уособленням батьківської любові і розуміння. 9. Після низки ролей у романтичних комедіях вона почала ламати свій стереотип комедійної акторки. 10. Широта знань та досвід роботи тепер відкривали перед ним цілий ряд службових можливостей.

53 Match the words in the left and right columns to restore the collocations from the text. Give the context where they are used.

e. g. "veritable epitome". Gordon Gekko in the film Wall Street was seen as a veritable epitome of American economy of that period.


1. veritable positive type j.   1. creative to a project a.
2. moral choices k.   2. craft of celebrity b.
3. charismatic life l.   3. star weight around c.
4. eschew characters m.   4. body my ego in line d.
5. ambivalent colony n.   5. bottom-line heart e.
6. outright lapses o.   6. commit characters f.
7. condone definition p.   7. keep new alliances g.
8. cottage hooky q.   8. throw of work h.
9. play epitome r.   9. cut family i.
10. imbue typecasting s.   10. collaborative latitude j.
11. quirky choices t.   11. pitfalls vehicle k.
12. reshape characters u.   12. create myself short l.

54 Answer the questions on the text above?

1. Which role brought the actor the supreme accolade and ultimate recognition?


2. What kind of characters does he typically play?

3. What is the secret of his charismatic personality?

4. What is his attitude to typecasting?

5. Does the audience condone Douglas' ambivalent filmic choices?

6. What is his favourite retreat and idyllic home?

7. What kind of person are you likely to see if you have a glimpse of him at leisure/acting?

8. What is the creative latitude and collection of his characters?

9. How does he choose which film to appear in?

10. What can we expect from Douglas as a producer?

11. What attracts the actor towards movie making?

12. What is the price of fame for a celebrity and for Michael Douglas?

13. What are his plans for the future?

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