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Best Old Hollywood actress portrayal by a contemporary actress

I did not include the laughable trashy portrayals like Faye as Mommie Dearest, Nicole as Grace Kelly, or Lindsay Lohan as Liz.

by Anonymousreply 64March 18, 2023 8:53 AM

I'm not a huge Michelle Williams fan but I thought she captured Marilyn better than any other actress who has played her. I think Judy Davis is wildly overrated as Judy. Too harsh looking. Judy has a very soft face.

by Anonymousreply 1March 16, 2023 11:12 PM

I think Jessica's performance was the winner. She revitalized Joan Crawford and saved her from the punchline she became due to Faye's misplaced antics. There's a reason Joan's grandson praised Jessica and said she and Ryan Murphy gave Joan new life. Susan Sarandon was also good as Bette although her material was a bit weaker and Susan didn't always copy Bette's clipped speech and intonations.

Cate's Kate was one of the few bright spots in the Aviator but at times the performance seemed too broad, almost like the joke was on her.

Nicole was miscast as Lucille Ball. Didn't resemble her and I didn't find her believable at all.

Renee was a very good Judy and deserved the Oscar, not just for more or less copying Judy's mannerisms (besides the quivering lip which Renee can't seem to get rid of) but also for doing all her own singing.

Michelle didn't work as Marilyn for me. The padding she wore gave her a more accurate physicality than Ana de Armas but she didn't resemble Marilyn in any other way and I didn't get all the praise she was lauded with. I thought Ana de Armas was far superior and in the better movie. Her Cuban accent only slips a few times in the 3-hour runtime which wasn't that big of a deal. As someone who really doesn't care for Marilyn, it was Ana's performance that made me sympathize with Marilyn, not Michelle's.

Annette was good as Gloria and got a BAFTA nod although no Oscar nomination. My main issue here is that there's a lack of a physical resemblance. Gloria had very large eyes which Annette simply doesn't and I haven't seen enough of Gloria in later life to know if Annette's performance was accurate or not but I certainly sympathized with her.

by Anonymousreply 2March 16, 2023 11:20 PM

Marilyn Monroe! Marilynasty!

by Anonymousreply 3March 16, 2023 11:26 PM

Marilyn Monroe! Marilynasty!

by Anonymousreply 4March 16, 2023 11:27 PM

Davis by far. I just wish they hadn't brought her in at "St. Louis". She was still a bit old for that, at 45yrs old. Garland was only 21 or 22yrs old at the time it was filmed.

by Anonymousreply 5March 16, 2023 11:32 PM

I'll tell you one that I love - Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret on THE CROWN. Fabulous.

by Anonymousreply 6March 16, 2023 11:45 PM

R6, bless your heart.

by Anonymousreply 7March 16, 2023 11:51 PM

Love you, R7.

by Anonymousreply 8March 17, 2023 12:00 AM

R2, you stupid little homosexual boy!

by Anonymousreply 9March 17, 2023 12:10 AM

I vote for Jessica, but as Frances Farmer.

by Anonymousreply 10March 17, 2023 12:19 AM

Martha Stewart as Veronica Lake

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by Anonymousreply 11March 17, 2023 12:21 AM

Jessica and Judy as Judy

by Anonymousreply 12March 17, 2023 12:54 AM

Davis as Garland by a mile with special mention of Tammy Blanchard as the young Garland in the Davis film. They both won Emmys — I wonder if that’s the only time a young and older version of the same character in the same film both won awards.

by Anonymousreply 13March 17, 2023 1:17 AM

Every item in the OP's list offers a terrible performance. Christ.

by Anonymousreply 14March 17, 2023 1:22 AM

I didn’t think Michelle Williams was particularly good as Marilyn, but she was dynamite as Gwen Verdon.

by Anonymousreply 15March 17, 2023 1:25 AM

Whether you liked the film or not, not one of the other actresses can touch Ana de Armas as Marilyn. She is mesmerizing and, granted, she's aided by the perfectionist reproduction approach of the movie but she is just incredible. I hope she wins an Oscar soon.

by Anonymousreply 16March 17, 2023 1:26 AM

OP is a BITCH!!!!

by Anonymousreply 17March 17, 2023 1:28 AM

All of these sucked except Davis and Lange + Sarandon.

by Anonymousreply 18March 17, 2023 1:29 AM

I thought Helena did a credible Elizabeth...

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by Anonymousreply 19March 17, 2023 1:31 AM

Kate's casting as both young and older Queen Elizabeth Tudor I was PERFECT.

by Anonymousreply 20March 17, 2023 1:37 AM

La Lohan as La Liz.


by Anonymousreply 21March 17, 2023 1:37 AM

Elizabeth Tudor, you stupid bitch? She only made British films.

by Anonymousreply 22March 17, 2023 1:38 AM

^Cate Blanchett

by Anonymousreply 23March 17, 2023 1:38 AM

Not 21, R20 ^ 😳

by Anonymousreply 24March 17, 2023 1:40 AM

Susan Sarandon played Susan Sarandon. There's little to no Bette Davis in her portrayal. Sarandon was fucking lazy. I didn't want an impression but all Sarandon did was be herself. Lazy, lazy, lazy. Over-rated and borderline incompetent.

by Anonymousreply 25March 17, 2023 2:17 AM

Anybody see Tovah Feldshuh as Kate Hepburn? In a TV movie about Howard Hughes, circa 1978.

Well, she's sensational.

by Anonymousreply 26March 17, 2023 2:27 AM

Audra Lindley as Laura Hope Crews

by Anonymousreply 27March 17, 2023 2:32 AM

A bit of it...

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by Anonymousreply 28March 17, 2023 2:32 AM

R17 CZJ's portrayal is responsible for bringing Olivia de Havilland out of retirement to file a lawsuit. Ryan Murphy has probably blacklisted CZJ from his actors list.

by Anonymousreply 29March 17, 2023 2:40 AM

R27, a blessing to you for putting those two names in the same sentence.

by Anonymousreply 30March 17, 2023 6:43 PM

[quote] Susan Sarandon was also good as Bette although her material was a bit weaker and Susan didn't always copy Bette's clipped speech and intonations.

Sarandon didn't even try to do Bette Davis's voice. I realize it's one of the most distinct voices in Hollywood, but come on. Not sure if that was lazy or chicken.

by Anonymousreply 31March 17, 2023 6:47 PM

Sarandon had the advantage of resembling the person she was playing more than Lange, which was all that seemed to matter at the time Feud was on the air. Lange didn't resemble Crawford in body, face, or voice, but somehow channeled her spirit if that's possible. I found her performance more impactful overall than Sarandon's. I'm not sure who Lange was playing, but they felt like a real human being.

There is one scene where both Lange and Sarandon are on fire and it's on one of the later episodes where they're in a motel during the filming of Hush Hush, Sweet Charlotte and they have a big explosion. They were both wonderful and the writing was at its best there. That show is perhaps the best thing Ryan Murphy has ever done.

by Anonymousreply 32March 17, 2023 7:30 PM

I have no idea if Annette Bening was anything like Gloria Grahame but it was a very good performance.

So I guess I’d vote Judy Davis.

by Anonymousreply 33March 17, 2023 8:13 PM

Jennifer Love Hewitt's portrayal of Audrey Hepburn ranks right up there with Lindsay Lohan's sublime performance as Elizabeth Taylor.

by Anonymousreply 34March 17, 2023 8:25 PM

I thought Lange played Frances Farmer - and from what I remember of the film, it was a first-rate performance.

by Anonymousreply 35March 17, 2023 8:45 PM

As popular as Renée's win was for "Judy", I now wish Alfre Woodard had been nominated for and won BA for "Clemency". I voted for Judy Davis for her TV biopic although she was technically too old for some of the earlier scenes, wonderful.

by Anonymousreply 36March 17, 2023 9:02 PM

On being GG...

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by Anonymousreply 37March 17, 2023 10:16 PM

the Oscars

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by Anonymousreply 38March 17, 2023 10:17 PM

Not old Hollywood, per se, but Michelle Williams as Gwen Verdon was great and very believable. I say this as someone who cannot stand Williams.

by Anonymousreply 39March 17, 2023 10:50 PM

Faye Dunaway as Katharine Hepburn!

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by Anonymousreply 40March 17, 2023 10:52 PM

I can't believe you included Kidman as Lucy OP! I hope that was a sarcastic mention.

by Anonymousreply 41March 17, 2023 11:02 PM

Catherine Hicks - Marilyn

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by Anonymousreply 42March 18, 2023 12:26 AM

Valerie Harper - Tallulah Bankhead

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by Anonymousreply 43March 18, 2023 12:56 AM

[quote] I think Jessica's performance was the winner. She revitalized Joan Crawford and saved her from the punchline she became due to Faye's misplaced antics.

Jessica was not playing Joan Crawford. Even she didn’t know who the hell she was playing. She looked like an old Asian woman.

by Anonymousreply 44March 18, 2023 1:14 AM

I remember Lange saying that she included a Southern twang to Joan because Joan was from the South. She’s a fucking idiot.

by Anonymousreply 45March 18, 2023 1:16 AM

R45, that's news to me. Her Joan didn't speak with a Southern twang.

by Anonymousreply 46March 18, 2023 1:21 AM

Lange was great in Feud but she wasn't really playing the Joan we all know. Sarandon was very good as Bette but didn't have the best material or big scenes.

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by Anonymousreply 47March 18, 2023 1:52 AM

I think Lange did good by playing a more humane, sympathetic Joan. The Joan that’s embedded into all our brains is Mommie Dearest. Though it was memorable, it was not a particularly honest depiction.

by Anonymousreply 48March 18, 2023 3:59 AM

Sarandon stopped trying in 96

by Anonymousreply 49March 18, 2023 4:45 AM

Sorry OP but you fucked up. Faye Dunaway owns this one.

by Anonymousreply 50March 18, 2023 5:17 AM

Can we do an 80s TV movie version of this same subject, also with a poll? Off the top of my head, there’s Loni, Lynda, Cheryl, Ann Jillian….

by Anonymousreply 51March 18, 2023 5:39 AM

R40 Katharine Hepburn always said Vanessa Redgrave was one of her favorite actresses and wanted her to play her in a biopic. They should do a film version and cast Redgrave. I'd love to see Dunaway's reaction if nothing else.

by Anonymousreply 52March 18, 2023 5:47 AM

R41 I was not a fan of Nicole's Lucille Ball but she did get the Oscar nomination and pretty positive reviews from critics which is why I included her.

by Anonymousreply 53March 18, 2023 5:47 AM

Seeing how Cate actually won the Oscar for her uncanny portrayal of Kate Hepburn, I'm surprised more people aren't voting for her. She's the first on that comes to mind. Most of the others were truly too old when playing them or their real voices came through. Susan Sarandon surprised me. She did a better job with Bette than Jessica did as Joan. Sorry old fags, no one cares about about Judy Davis. She has a forgettable face and "never wanted celebrity" anyway.

by Anonymousreply 54March 18, 2023 5:49 AM

small correction: one NOT on

by Anonymousreply 55March 18, 2023 5:50 AM

R45 The Joan we saw onscreen was not the Joan in her private life. In her private life she was Billie. There are home movies and photos of her outside with no makeup so all her freckles are readily apparent and she's wearing baggy mens clothing. Her posture is completely different as well. When she wasn't playing Joan Crawford the movie star with the Transatlantic MGM-trained voice, she did have a bit of a Southern twang because she came from Texas. There are audio recordings of her singing for Torch Song (before she was dubbed in the final movie) and you can hear her talking to the crew recording her and the Southern accent comes out in her natural voice at 2:18. And like the comments on the video say, there are other video recordings of her out there where you can hear her real accent.

As R48 said, the Joan some of you on here are obsessed with isn't Joan at all but Faye's version of Joan or the camp version she was presented as in her 50s movies.

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by Anonymousreply 56March 18, 2023 5:50 AM

R54 I think many people view Cate's Oscar win as Katharine Hepburn as more of a makeup loss for losing to Goop when she should have won for Elizabeth. I thought her Hepburn was good but there were a few times it came across more as parody. I think had the whole film been about Cate's Kate, the performance may have seemed more consistent. She was vastly more interesting than babyfaced Leo trying and failing to play a manchild.

by Anonymousreply 57March 18, 2023 5:53 AM

Susan Sarandon has not made any effort since winning her Oscar for Dead Man Walking. Outside of Feud, her choice in projects has been horrendous. Didn't that Fox country show heavily promote her as the star even though she's killed off in the premiere episode?

by Anonymousreply 58March 18, 2023 5:53 AM

And the winner is... EJ Johnson as Kim Novak!

Congratulations, Eej!

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by Anonymousreply 59March 18, 2023 5:57 AM

[quote] Sarandon didn't even try to do Bette Davis's voice. I realize it's one of the most distinct voices in Hollywood, but come on. Not sure if that was lazy or chicken.

Bette Davis didn't use that voice in real life--it was an affected voice she used only when she was speaking to the public to go with her larger-than-life persona. In real life her voice sounded fairly normal.

Sarandon copied that modulation for the show--she used a more normal voice for most of the scenes, but for the few scenes where she was speaking before the public (such as on the red carpet at the Academy Awards, or being interviewed by the press) she would use the famous "Pee-TAH, Pee-TAH, Pee-TAH!" voice

by Anonymousreply 60March 18, 2023 6:03 AM

What a lot of people seem to be missing about Sarandon and Lange's portrayals was that they weren't playing Bette and Joan, the movie stars, but Bette and Joan the human beings.

by Anonymousreply 61March 18, 2023 6:10 AM

Halle Berry won an Emmy and a Golden Globe for her portrayal of Dorothy Dandridge.

by Anonymousreply 62March 18, 2023 8:38 AM

Grey Gardens... Drew Barrymore as Little Edie, Jessica Lange as Old Edie, and Jeanne Tripplehorn as Jackie Onassis were very good.

by Anonymousreply 63March 18, 2023 8:52 AM

sorry, they're not portrayals of old actresses

by Anonymousreply 64March 18, 2023 8:53 AM
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