Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sunday Spotlight: Jennifer Lawrence the Girl on Fire

Jennifer Lawrence is having a great month so far.  Nominated for her second Academy Awards, winning a Golden Globe, and hosting Saturday Night Live.  This week is just the tip of the iceberg.  She had a fantastic year in 2012 and is having an amazing start to her career.  At 22 she already has an impressive resume.

Her breakthrough came in 2010 when Winter's Bone premiered at Sundance and won the Grand Jury Prize. For the role of mountain girl Ree she learned to hunt and skin raccoons.  The movie did not do well in the theaters but did get lots of critical praise and earned several Academy Award nominations including one for Jennifer for Best Actress.  At the time she was the second youngest Actress to earn a Best Actress nomination.

Earning an Oscar nomination as a young actor or actress does not mean you will go on to have a successful career.  Just ask Haley Joel Osment, Keisha Castle-Hughes, and to a lesser extent Ellen Paige.  But somehow Jennifer defied the odds.  While some actresses find success in big budget franchise hits and some find critical praise in independent films Jennifer was able to do both

Right after the Oscars Jennifer signed on to her first big budget franchise as Mystique in X-Men: First Class. After two disappointing movies in the X-Men franchise First Class needed to be good to rejuvenate the franchise.  Casting a somewhat unknown in the role of a main character was a bit of a gamble but it paid off.  Jennifer was great in the role and was one of the reasons the movie was a successful.

Somehow she also had time to land a role that would define her even more.  The Hunger Games was a hugely popular book and there were many actresses up for the part of Katniss.  After she was cast die hard fans were upset that she wouldn't look right or was too old for the part. But,  by the time movie came out in 2012 whatever doubts fans had about her were gone.  The movie became one of the biggest hits of the year and it was her performance that made the move so good. Fans adored her in the role and she won the MTV Movie Award for Best Actress and was nominated for a Peoples Choice Award.

But she wasn't done in 2012.  Proving that she has real acting skill she did another independent movie Silver Linings Playbook.  As Tiffany a girl with issues she showed she can create a complex character.  So after winning over fans with X:Men and The Hunger Games she won over critics again with this one.  She won the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical and is nominated and considered a front runner by some for Best Actress at the Oscars.

I can't forget to mention that in 2012 she was also in the horror remake House at the End of the Street.  This unfortunately was not her best choice but lucky for her it came out in the middle of the year and is sandwiched between her two successful movies.

Also another random fact.  She had a small role in Like Crazy which won The Grand Jury Prize at Sundance in 2011 so she was in two Grand Jury Prize winners in back to back years.

In summary.  Very few people can keep their critical praise and do giant blockbuster franchises especially a young actress.  But she has done it and has two Oscar Nominations and stars in two franchises that have to work their shooting schedules around her.  My only hope is that the pressure doesn't get to her and she can keep giving us great performances.

No comments:

Post a Comment