Джули Кристи

Джули Кристи

Julie Christie
Роден в: Индия
Рожден ден: 14.04.1941
Julie Christie, the British movie legend whom `Al Pacino' called "the most poetic of all actresses," was born in Chukua, Assam, India, on April 14, 1941, the daughter of a tea planter and his Welsh wife Rosemary, who was a painter. The young Christie grew up on her father's tea plantation before being sent to England for her education. Finishing her studies in Paris, where she had moved to improve her French with an eye to possibly becoming a linguist (she is fluent in French and Italian), the teenager became enamored of the freedom of the Continent. She also was smitten by the bohemian life of artists and planned on becoming an artist before she enrolled in London's Central School of Speech Training. She made her debut as a professional in 1957 as a member of the Frinton Repertory of Essex. Christie was not fond of the stage, even though it allowed her to travel, including a professional gig in the United States. Her true métier as an actress was film, and she made her debut in the science-fiction television series "A for Andromeda," Her first film was a bit part in the Ealing-like comedy "Crooks Anonymous" (1961), which was followed up by a larger ingénue role in another comedy, "The Fast Lady" (1962). The producers of the James Bond series were sufficiently intrigued by the young actress to consider her for the role that subsequently went to Ursula Andress in "Doctor No" (1962), but dropped the idea because she was not busty enough. Christie first worked with the man who would kick her career into high gear, director `John Schlesinger' , wen he choose her as a replacement for the actress originally cast in "Billy Liar" (1963). Christie's turn in the film as the free-wheeling Liz was a stunner, and she had her first taste of becoming a symbol if not icon of the new British cinema. Her screen presence was such that the great `John Ford' cast her as the young prostitute in "Young Cassidy" (1965). Charlton Heston wanted her for his film "The War Lord" (1965), but the studio refused her salary demands. Although Amercan magazines portrayed Christie as a "newcomer" when she made her breakthrough to superstardom in Schlesinger's seminal Swinging Sixties film "Darling" (1965), she actually had considerable work under her professional belt and was in the process of a artistic quickening. Playing an amoral social butterfly who undergoes a metamorphosis from immature sex kitten to jaded socialite, Christie won raves, including the Best Actress Awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the British Film Academy. She had arrived, especially as she had followed up "Darling" with the role of Lara in `David Lean' 's adaptation of `Boris Pasternak' 's "Doctor Zhivago" (1965), one of the all-time box-office champs. Christie was now a superstar who commanded a price of $400,000 per picture, a fact ruefully noted in Charlton Heston's diary (his studio had balked at paying her then-fee of $35,000). More interested in film as an art form than in consolidating her movie stardom, Christie followed up "Zhivago" with a dual role in "Fahrenheit 451" (1966) for director `Francois Truffaut' , a director she admired. Next, she starred as Thomas Hardy heroine Bathsheba Everdene in Schlesinger's "Far From the Madding Crowd" (1967), a film that is far better remembered now than when it was received in 1967. Critics lambasted the film and Chrisite for being too "mod" and thus untrue to one of Hardy's classic tales of fate. Critics suggested that the character of Bathsheba would have been better served by `Vanessa Redgrave' , who was a more accomplished actress than Christie, the argument went, and who would have been "truer" to the part as written by Hardy. While Redgrave is a fine actress, in hindsight, Christie is better cast as she is more likely to fatally attract the attentions of three men and thus utterly transform their lives. With her unique beauty and possessed of a free spirit that animates her on-screen characterizations, Christie had a movie star charisma that is lacking in Redgrave. Perhaps that is why, along with the beautiful cinematography of `Nicholas Roeg' , the movie is much thought of now. It is believable that three very disparate men (played by the very disparate actors Alan Bates, Peter Finch and Terence Stamp) would give over their lives wholly to a woman of Christie's charisma, whereas Redgrave -- as is evidenced by her flat portrayal of Queen Guinevere in "Camelot" (1967) -- likely would only have won the life-long devotion of a fellow Trotskyite. Almost thirty years later, Schlesinger's rapid cutting in the scene in which Stamp's trooper impresses Christie's Bathsheba with his swordsmanship is no longer jarringly modern but part of the cinematic tradition. And it must be kept in mind that a film is a mirror of the time in which it is made, not of the era in which the material adapted to the screen was created, and "Far From The Madding Crowd" is a prime example of the best of mid-'60s British cinema. Although no one then knew it, the period 1967-68 represented the high-water mark of Christe's career. Fatefully, like the Hardy heroine she had portrayed, she had met the man who would transform her life and her pretensions to a movie career in their seven-years-long love affair, the American actor Warren Beatty. Living his life was always far more important than being a star for Beatty, who viewed the movie star profession as a "treadmill leading to more treadmills" and who was wealthy enough after "Bonnie and Clyde" (1967) to not have to ever work again. Christie and Beatty had visited a working farm during the production of "Madding Crowd" and had been appalled by the industrial exploitation of the animals. Animal rights would henceforth be a very important subject to Christie. Christie's last box-office hit in which she was the top-liner was "Petulia" (1968) for `Richard Lester' , a film that featured one of co-star `George C. Scott' 's greatest performances, perfectly counter-balanced by Christie's portrayal of an "arch-kook" who was emblematic of the `60s. After meeting Beatty, Julie Christe essentially surrendered any aspirations to screen stardom, or at maintaining herself as a top-drawer working actress (success at the box office being a guarantee of the best parts, even in art films.) She turned down the lead in "They Shoot Horses Don't They" (1969) and "Anne of a Thousand Days" (1969), two parts that garnered Oscar nominations for the second choices, Jane Fonda and Geneviève Bujold. After shooting "In Search of Gregory" (1969), a professional and box office flop, to fulfill her contractual obligations, she spent her time with Beatty in Calfiornia, renting a beach house at Malibu. She did return to form in `Joseph Losey' 's "The Go-Between" (1971), a fine picture with a script by the great `Harold Pinter' , and she won another Oscar nomination as the whore-house proprietor in Robert Altman's "McCabe and Mrs Miller" that she made with her lover Beatty. However, like Beatty himself, she did not seek steady work, which is professional suicide for an actor who wants to maintain a standing in the first rank of movie stars. (Her idol is Marlon Brando, another notoriously finicky actor who disdained stardom and the Hollywood star-making machine who was more committed to personal causes than to a career.) Beatty, who generally controlled his own projects as producer, could afford to be choosy, but not so Christie. She turned down the role of the Russian Empress in "Nicholas and Alexandra," another film that won the second-choice an Oscar nomination. She dd appear in the landmark mystery-horror film "Don't Look Now" (1974), but that likely was as a favor to the director, Nicholas Roeg, who had been her cinematographer on "Fahrenheit 451," "Far From the Madding Crowd" and "Petulia." In the mid `70s, her affair with Beatty came to an end, but the two remained close friends and worked together in "Shampoo" (1975) and "Heaven Can Wait" (1978), two huge hits. Christie was still enough of a star, due to sheer magnetism rather than her own pull at the box-office, to be offered $1 million to play the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis character in "The Greek Tycoon" (a part eventually played by Jacqueine Bisset to no great acclaim). She signed for but was forced to drop out of the lead in "Agatha" (which was filled by Vanessa Redgrave, oddly miscast against the far shorter `Dustin Hoffman' ) after she broke a wrist roller-skating (a particularly southern Californian fate!). She signed for the female lead in "American Gigolo" (1980) when Richard Gere originally was attached to the picture, but she dropped out when John Travolta muscled his way into the lead. When Travolta himself dropped out and Gere was subbed back in, it was too late for Christe to reconsider, as the part already had been filled by model-actress `Lauren Hutton' . (Christie and Gere eventually appeared together in "Power" (1986), which was directed by `Sidney Lumet' , a director she had longed to work with. She reportedly received $1 million, such was the allure that Christie maintained even though it had been nearly a decade since she was in a hit movie.) Christie turned down the part of Louise Bryant in "Reds", a part written by Warren Beatty with her in mind, as she felt an American should play the role. Beatty's current over, Diane Keaton, won an Oscar nomination for the part. Still, she remains a part of the film, Beatty's long-gestated labor of love, as it is dedicated to "Jules." Christie moved back to Britiain and become the UK's answer to Jane Fonda, campaigning for various social and political causes, including animal rights and nuclear disarmament. The parts she did take primarily were driven by her social consciousness, such as appearing in Sally Potter's first feature-length film, "The Gold-Diggers," a feminist parable entirely made by women who all shared the same pay scale. Roles in "The Return of the Soldier" (1982) and Merchant-Ivory's "Heat and Dust" (1983) seemed to herald a return to form, but Christie -- as befits such a symbol of the freedom and lack of conformity of the '60s -- decided to do it her way. She did not go "careering," even though her unique talent and beauty was still very much in demand by filmmakers. At this point, Christie's movie career went into eclipse. Once again, she was particularly choosy about her work, so much so that many came to see her, essentially, as retired. A career renaissance came in the mid-1990s with her turn as Gertrude in Kenneth Branagh's "Hamlet" (1996). As Christie said at the time, she didn't feel she could turn Branagh down as he was a national treasure. But the best was yet to come: her turn as the faded movie star married to handyman Nick Nolte and romanced by a younger man in "Afterglow" (1997), which brought her rave notices. She received her third Best Actress Oscar nomination for her performance, and showed up at the awards as radiant and uniquely beautiful as ever. (Christie was plainly relieved that she did not win the award.) In the decade since "Afterglow," she has worked steadily on film in supporting roles. Christie, as an actress who eschewed vulgar stardom, proved to be an inspiration to her co-star Sarah Polley, the Canadian actress with a leftist political bent who also abhors Hollywood. Of her co-star in "No Such Thing" (2001) and "The Secret Life of Words" (2005), Polley says that Christie is uniquely aware of her commodification by the movie industry and the mass media during the 1960s. Not wanting to be reduced to a product, she had rebelled and had assumed control of her life and career. Her attitude makes her one of Polley's heroes. Christie has lived with left-wing investigative journalist Duncan Campbell (a Manchester Guardian columnist) since 1979, first in Wales, then in Ojai, California, and now in London's East End. In addition to her film-work, she has narrated many books-on-tape. In 1995, she made a triumphant return to the stage in a London revival of Harold Pinter's "Old Times," which garnered her superb reviews

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