Have you guys seen Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling in Crazy, Stupid, Love yet? If not, please head to the theater sooner rather than later. It’s a great flick with amazing performances — especially from the core foursome of Carell, Gosling, Julianne Moore and Emma Stone. It seriously was a pleasant surprise. There’s a twist towards the end of the movie that is just so gloriously well done and unexpected. It’s definitely worth the price of admission. There’s even a monumental Moment of Goodness that involves Dirty Dancing. Enough said. Crazy, Stupid, Love is one of the best summer movies of 2011. What else is cool about the film are all the actors with TV street cred. In these days of major movie stars making the transition to the small screen, it’s nice to see that it also works the other way around. Even the CSL actors with veteran movie star status (Gosling, Moore and Kevin Bacon) got their starts on TV. Let’s take a look:
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Cal Weaver, a guy who’s forced to deal with life after his wife suddenly asks for a divorce over dinner. Carell manages to give a hilarious, sincere and at times a heartbreaking performance. He’s a little bumbling and clueless but he’s so damn likable even as he makes faux pas after faux pas.
TV Ties: This year, Carell left NBC’s The Office after playing Dunder Mifflin Regional Manager Michael Scott for seven seasons. He won a Golden Globe for the role but shockingly never picked up an Emmy for Lead Actor. Before The Office, Carell was a standout on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and was a cast member on The Dana Carvey Show back in 1996.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Jacob Palmer, a real player who tries to turn Cal into an older version of himself but in the process finds out there’s more to life than one night stands. Gosling is thoroughly mesmerizing in this movie. He’s utterly fantastic and just embodies this character a hundred percent. Plus, he not only shows off his moves, he shows off his incredible body. And I’m not talking body of work. Just see the film and bask in the gorgeousness of Gosling.
TV Ties: Way before hitting it big in The Notebook and Blue Valentine, Ryan found work on television, most notably getting his start on The All-New Mickey Mouse Club. You may have heard of some of his costars: Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake, JC Chasez and Keri Russell. Gosling was also on a syndicated short-lived teen show called Breaker High. Think Saved by the Bell meets a high school version of Love Boat — he played a student attending classes on a cruise ship that sailed around the world. He then went on to play Young Hercules.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Emily Weaver, Cal’s conflicted wife, who seemingly hits a bit of a mid-life crisis. Moore, as usual, is completely awesome. And she’s able to be funny too, which is refreshing, because she often plays such dramatic roles.
TV Ties: Most recently, she guest-starred on NBC’s 30 Rock, as a love interest for Jack Donaghy. But her TV roots began when she played the dual roles of Frannie and Sabrina Hughes on CBS’ late great soap opera As the World Turns. She won a Daytime Emmy while on the show. She was definitely someone you could tell was going to go on to bigger and better things. She earned some major cool points for returning to the show a few months before ATWT was cancelled in 2010.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Emma Stone plays Hannah, a newbie lawyer who’s trying to figure things out with her love life. She ultimately takes the more adventurous route and comes up big. Emma continues to impress in this film.
TV Ties: Stone was one of the many actors on Fox’s short-lived version of The Cannonball Run, the action series Drive. The show was about an illegal cross-country road race and starred a pre-Castle Nathan Fillion.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Tomei plays Kate, one of Carell’s conquests. The Oscar-winner (for My Cousin Vinny) turns in a spunky performance and is a welcome presence in the film.
TV Ties: In the 80s, Marisa starred on As the World Turns, around the same time as Meg Ryan and Julianne Moore. She played Marcy Thompson Cushing, a character who first caused some trouble for the resident doctor, Bob Hughes, then her life turned into a fairy tale when she found and fell in love with royalty. Shortly after Tomei left ATWT, she starred in The Cosby Show spin-off, A Different World. However, she was only on for one season.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Bacon plays David Lindhagen, a character whose name is uttered a million times in the movie (slight exaggeration). Lindhagen is pivotal to the story of Cal and Emily Weaver. There’s a scene in the backyard near the end of the movie that gets even better once David Lindhagen arrives. It’s a must-see scene.
TV Ties: Bacon’s no stranger to television. Back in the 70s he starred on the daytime soap Search for Tomorrow and then in the very early 80s he was Tim Werner on The Guiding Light. One of his best performances was when he played an exaggerated version of himself in an episode of NBC’s Will & Grace. He also won a Golden Globe and a SAG Award (and was nominated for an Emmy) for his HBO movie Taking Chance. Plus, he’s directed several episodes of his wife’s (Kyra Sedgwick) TNT series The Closer.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Jessica Riley, a babysitter who has a massive crush on Steve Carell’s character, Cal. What she does in order to turn that crush into a reality is pretty crazy and Tipton does a great job handling everything that’s asked of her.
TV Ties: Analeigh’s a former model and reality TV star who’s made the jump to movies and scripted television. She placed third in Cycle 11 of America’s Next Top Model. She was in the same season as Isis King, who’s about to return for the upcoming all-star edition. She guest-starred on an episode of The Big Bang Theory and is set to join the upcoming season of HBO’s Hung.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Lynch plays Bernie Riley, Jessica’s dad and friend to Cal and Emily Weaver. Poor guy doesn’t really know what to do with himself after his friends split up. Plus, he has a domineering wife who has no problem setting him straight on the way things are going to be.
TV Ties: John Carroll Lynch is arguably best known for playing Drew Carey’s cross-dressing brother on the sitcom The Drew Carey Show. Currently he’s a cast member on ABC’s Body of Proof. CarnivÃ le fans will remember Lynch in the recurring role of escaped convict Varlyn Stroud; he was also in HBO’s epic miniseries From the Earth to the Moon.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Littleford plays the bitchy Claire Riley, wife of Bernie, mother of Jessica.
TV Ties: Littleford was one of the original correspondents on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show (her time on the show overlapped with Carell’s run). She filed reports during the Craig Kilborn era as well as for Jon Stewart.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Yes, Josh Groban is in Crazy, Stupid, Love. No, he’s not playing himself. He plays Richard, a sort of douchebag lawyer involved with Emma Stone’s character. It was a surprise to see him and he does a pretty good job.
TV Ties: Other than his various musical performances that have appeared on the small screen, Groban has guest-starred on a couple episodes of Glee.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Cox played Tiffany. Ryan Gosling’s Jacob Palmer enlisted her to help turn Steve Carell’s Cal Weaver from dud to stud. Lucky Mekia did get some quality flirting time with Gosling as well.
TV Ties: Cox played Gugu Mbatha-Raw’s sister on J.J. Abrams’ short-lived spy series for NBC called Undercovers. Before that she was the older woman Dixon dated on the CW’s 90210 who also faked a pregnancy to ensure the two stay together. Didn’t work of course.
Crazy, Stupid, Love Character: Lapira plays Liz, best friend to Emma Stone’s Hannah. Lapira is excellent at urging her BFF to get in the game and be less safe with her choices. She gives a hilarious performance. I think she showed some great comedy chops.
TV Ties: Well, Lapira was recently on FOX’s Traffic Light, a comedy that was solid but offered nothing new as far as that genre is concerned. She also had recurring roles on Dexter, Dollhouse and NCIS. On NCIS she played Special Agent Michelle Lee, love interest to Palmer and the additional member after Gibbs left to go on hiatus and Tony took over as lead of the team. Ultimately, Lee was outed as a traitor and was killed. It was sad the way she went out.
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