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Saturday, February 10, 2007

Actors from Other Shows QUESTIONS

The woman pictured above is Marisol Nichols, a socially aware young woman who I remember from a short-lived show from last year called In Justice. She played Sonya Quintano, an idealistic Latina trying to help get people falsely imprisoned out of jail. Now she's Nadia 'Natalie' Yassir, of Middle Eastern heritage, on "24". Her boss on "In Justice" was Charles Conti, played by Jason O'Mara, who's now the publisher Stuart Maxson on Men In Trees, and will play Philip Marlowe in an ABC-TV pilot.

Now, I happened to have enjoyed In Justice, in part because it had a different POV; that law enforcement sometimes gets it very wrong, and we need to be mindful of that, something that fuels, in part, my opposition to capital punishment, BTW.

Here's the first question: what obscure, not all that popular show or shows do you remember that have been a launching ground for performers? Two that come to mind were both Norman Lear productions. 704 Hauser, a 1994 show about the folks who moved in after Archie and Edith Bunker were gone. Don't remember much about it, except that it featured Maura Tierney, who now appears in E/R. The other is The Powers That Be, a 1992-93 show starring John Forsythe as Sen. William Franklin Powers, Holland Taylor, later of The Practice and Two and a Half Men, as his wife Margaret, Peter MacNicol (Ally McBeal, Numb3rs) as an aide, Valerie Mahaffey as the Powers' daughter Caitlyn Van Horne, David Hyde Pierce (Frasier) as her husband, the philandering Congressman Theodore Van Horne, Elizabeth Berridge (The John Larroquette Show) as Charlotte, the maid with whom Theodore was dallying, Robin Bartlett (Mad About You) as another aide, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Third Rock from the Sun) as Pierce Van Horne.
You can't name St. Elsewhere - not obscure enough.

Likewise, what movie seemed to spawn future stars, excluding American Graffiti, Taps, and movies directed by John Hughes?

One could take this in a literary way: a magazine or short story anthology that generated some big name writers.


Gordon said...

On the British side, I'm going to say Cracker, the series about a police psychologist. To my knowledge, the main two launches were

1) Robbie Coltrane - known primarily as a comedic actor, he built his dramatic chops in this series, and

2) Christopher Eccleston in series one as the earnest officer who often brought Fitzgerald in.

(There are several other actors whose names I cannot remember)

There's also THE EDGE, a short-lived sketch comedy show that launched the careers of Jennifer Aniston and Wayne Knight. My personal favorite sketch from that show was "Cracklin' Crotch." Ah, the 90s were fun, weren't they?

Reel Fanatic said...

Freaks and Geeks is the one that stands out to me:

James Franco, of course, went to be in the Spidey movies and star in Flyboys and others

Seth Rogen has starred in all the Judd Apatow flicks, and this summer will really blow up as the main man in "Knocked Up"

Linda Cardellini, who is simply adorable, is still a slowly rising star ... she was great in "Brokeback Mountain" and a variety of other small parts, and she should get a big break soon

Greg said...

Right off the top of my head is E/R, with George Clooney after his stint on The Facts of Life. It was his first starring vehicle. Also had Jason Alexander. I always found it weird that he was in two shows named after the emergency room.