Iconic American roles – by Brits!
On receiving his Best Original Screenplay Oscar for Chariots of Fire, back in 1982, he famously cried ‘The British Are Coming!’ Well, the British film industry hasn’t exactly taken over the movie-making world, so it sounds rather like hubris in retrospect; although British presence at this year’s Golden Globes (and therefore presumably the Oscars too) was not to be sniffed at.
But the funny thing is, his prediction has come true rather in some ways – not on the big screen but on the small screen. I’ve not seen anyone spot this yet, or at least draw the link. But i guess some have. But many have recognized the fact that we seem to have been enjoying bit of a golden age as far as American TV series are concerned. There’s the obvious: West Wing of course, then 24, Alias, Heroes, Lost etc etc. But it suddenly struck me that 3 actors have taken US TV by storm – by playing Americans, utterly convincingly in House, The Wire & Band of Brothers.
But here they are: Hugh Laurie playing House, Dominic West playing McNulty in The Wire (which is being hailed as the greatest and grittiest TV drama ever) and Damian Lewis in Spielberg’s Band of Brothers (and now starring in his own cop show, LIFE).
But you know what – besides all 3 being remarkably good British actors, who all pull off being authentically American (such that American friends simply can’t believe they’re not home-grown), they all have something else in common. They all went to Eton. Well fancy that.