MORGAN FREEMAN: ON HIS AFI AWARD, CLINT EASTWOOD & ACTING NATURALLY
This article is written by JORDAN ZAKARIN at THE HUFFINGTON POST
Hollywood is based on a star system, launching actors to leading men status and then hitching scripts and hopes to their tails. It’s how movies get made and box office victories are won, the releases and cash counting so often refreshing with the rise of the next big thing.
Then there are the fixed lights in the sky, more their own stellar systems, with legends and memories and all time classics spinning in their orbit, their gravitational pull supporting the weight of generations of admirers.
In the Hollywood as outer space analogy (which seems oddly appropriate), MORGAN FREEMAN is the red giant, the tremendous incandescent star deep into its light giving career.
An ACADEMY AWARD winner (MILLION DOLLAR BABY) and five time nominee (STREET SMART, THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION, DRIVING MISS DAISY, INVICTUS), he’s proven one of the greatest actors of the modern era, tackling race, hatred, love and humour with a certain genteel grace that is inimitable.
MORGAN FREEMAN was recently given a LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD from the AMERICAN FILM INSTITUTE to commemorate his unbelievable career, and despite the stature he holds in the film community, he said he was humbled by the honour.
“That is an extraordinary honour. That was one of the seminal moments of my entire life. It says that you’ve been somewhere and done something,” he told The Huffington Post.
“I think my favourite role is the role that sort of catapulted my movie career into being – the role of Leo Smalls in Street Smart,” he said of the 1987 film in which he played a tough pimp.
“I particularly enjoyed that part.”
He also had great things to say about his three time director CLINT EASTWOOD.
“I also greatly enjoyed making Invictus. I greatly enjoyed working with Clint Eastwood in all three movies we were on, but Invictus was outstandingly fun. He’s great fun to work with. He’s not a challenge at all. He just leaves it up to you.”
Perhaps, though, he didn’t find CLINT to be particularly challenging to work with because acting just comes naturally to him.
“I don’t find acting difficult,” he said when asked which role was most difficult for him.
“I can’t tell you.”
Quickly, though, one came to mind. It just wasn’t a film.
“It wasn’t in a movie. I did Othello once. On stage. Dreadful. In Dallas, Texas in 1983. That was tough. I came on stage and someone in the back of the theatre said, ‘Sing Purple Haze!‘ I looked exactly like Jimi Hendrix.”
“The audience…This was a public theatre. It’s free theatre. So the audience comes. They’re ready to have a good time. They’re ready to welcome you. But you better have it right.”
From that moment on, it’s fair to say the legendary performer did just that.
The actor appears every Wednesday night at 10 PM in the science discovery show THROUGH THE WORMHOLE on THE SCIENCE CHANNEL.