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Last updated: Sat. Dec. 14, 2013 - 07:50 am EDT

MARINATING A COLUMN BY MIKE MARIN

Mature actors more interesting than young stars

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Most of the press and fuss and “Sexiest Man Alive”-type awards these days go to comparatively young actors such as Zac Efron, Robert Pattinson and Channing Tatum. That’s all well and good, if not predictable.

Call me old-fashioned (seriously – I take that as a compliment), but I think the more mature, seasoned actors are infinitely more interesting than today’s youngsters.

Cases in point: Patrick Stewart and David McCallum. Here are two classically trained actors in their 70s and 80s who have played numerous iconic characters in their storied careers, which have lasted a combined 100 years.

Those of you in my generation (i.e., older than dirt) will remember Scotland’s McCallum in his first breakout role as Illya Kuryakin, Napoleon Solo’s sidekick – and eventual equal partner – in “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.”

During the mid-’60s run of that show, McCallum was on virtually every teen fan magazine cover, seemingly the absolute epitome of cool, calm and collectedness.

Nearly five decades later, he has created another memorable character, as medical examiner Donald “Ducky” Mallard in the top-rated TV series “NCIS.” How many actors have been on the cover of TV fan magazines 50 years apart?

Stewart, of course, is no slouch himself, having portrayed some of pop culture’s best-known creations.

This Shakespearean actor, born in England 73 years ago, first gained prominence in the United States as Capt. Jean-Luc Picard from “Star Trek: The Next Generation.”

Stewart followed that up by playing professor Charles Xavier in the hugely successful “X-Men” films. That’s not to mention the occasional highbrow role, such as King Richard in Mel Brooks’ “Robin Hood: Men in Tights.”

It’s good to be the king.


Mike Marin is a cranky curmudgeon who, when hes not yelling at kids to get off his lawn, likes to complain about the sad state of popular culture, especially as seen through a TV screen. His email address is marinating@tribune.com. This column is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinion of The News-Sentinel.


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