Erik Lundegaard gave his take on the new classics. Here are some of your suggestions:
The new Chaplin: This one is so obvious I can't believe you overlooked it.... Johnny Depp! He has already played the role perfectly in “Benny & Joon,” with the "runaway hat" schtick which he truly had down to a "T." —Deborah Dunstan
The modern day Joan Crawford is Sharon Stone for sure! —Shannon Hatzichristos
Catherine Zeta Jones is definitely the new Ava Gardner. —Catherine Bucher
You mentioned Peter Lorre, and a new incarnation HAS to be Steve Buscemi. Not just looks either. I am not so sure about the Buster Keaton/Bill Macy comparison though. Bill Macy plays so many different types of characters it's hard to do comparisons. I like Brad Pitt as the new Redford. I also like Deborah Messing as the new Lucille Ball, and again... not just the red hair. And, by the way, the new Jack Nicholson is Jack Nicholson. —Scott Ross
In response to your slide show that compared Russell Crowe to Marlon Brando, etc., I offer the following comparisons:
- Catherine Zeta-Jones is today's Ava Gardner: The face, the body, the coloring, the sultry allure, etc.
- Renee Zellweger is today's June Allyson: The perkiness, the sweet honesty, the ability to make you laugh and cry. They both have equal parts of leading lady and underdog in their personas.
- Tom Hanks is today's Spencer Tracy (could make a case for Chris Cooper, too): It's all about the groundedness in reality, the naturalness of the delivery, the Everyman quality.
- John Malkovich is today's Peter Lorre: One word -- creepy.
- Adrien Brody is today's Montgomery Clift: So poetically beautiful, so fragile, so haunted.
- Matt Damon is eventually going to be today's Albert Finney and/or Paul Newman: Terrific character actors in their old age with leading actor roles in their earlier years.
- Hugh Jackman is today's Gene Kelly: They sing, they dance, and they're still manly.
- Hilary Swank is today's Katharine Hepburn (cases could be made for Joan Allen and Laura Linney, too): The angularity, the tomboyish appeal, the inner strength, the uniqueness.
- Jude Law is today's Michael Caine (and not just because of “Alfie”): Beautiful blond Brits with charm and intelligence.
- Phillip Seymour Hoffman is today's William Bendix, with a dash of Claude Rains, too: Hoffman's doltish appearance allows him to play the dunce believably, while his ability to threaten (in "The Talented Mr. Ripley," for example) gives him a Claude Rains quality. He's today's all-purpose character actor.
- Ed Harris is today's Gregory Peck and/or Joseph Cotten: Pure, unadulterated American male, imbued with personal integrity.
- Edward Norton might one day become today's Laurence Olivier: Norton seems to work "from the outside in" as did Olivier.
- Cate Blanchett is today's Meryl Streep: The ability to mimic any accent plus the ability to be beautiful AND plain, depending on the role. They are both chameleons.
- Halle Berry is today's Natalie Wood: Only as good as the script or director allows them to be. Berry's breathtaking, yet fragile, beauty, and her voluptuous, yet petite, figure, add to the comparison.
- Samantha Morton is today's Luise Rainer: Always great, always forgotten.
- And (drum roll, please), Topher Grace is today's Ben Affleck!!! Why? Because Topher Grace is about to have the career Ben Affleck threw away.
—Terri Warren & John Thelin
Angelina as Bacall? Sorry but, Angelina is Ava Gardner reincarnated. Dark, exotic looks, and slightly messed up demeanor. Why wasn't she cast as Gardner in "The Aviator" instead of the bland Kate Beckinsale? —Kirsten Patterson
Gwyneth Paltrow is without a doubt the new Grace Kelly. They both share a classic beauty with and air of sophistication and intelligence. I can picture Paltrow in any of Kelly’s roles and vise versa. —Emily Malon
I would say that Kevin Costner is way more like Gary Cooper than Henry Fonda. —Mary Jane Gibson
I liked most of the comparisons about movie stars then and now. I didn't like the Monroe/Diaz or the Jolie/Bacall. Uma Thurman is much more mysterious then Jolie. As for the modern Monroe? We haven't found her yet. Kevin Costner shouldn't even be in that list, esp. when comparing to Fonda. James Caan could also compare to Van Heflin. I could see him in a modern day “Posessed.” I would compare Drew Barrymore to Doris Day — quirky, funny and talented. I could go on and on if I sat here and thought about it long enough. Thanks! —Lisa Price
Morgan Freeman as Jimmy Stewart?? Oh, please! What about Nicholas Cage as Jimmy Stewart instead? Much better! Can't you see him in It's A Wonderful Life? He is the embodiment of the guy. As for Cage's private life--there is no comparison. Yet, on the screen there are huge similarities. —Elizabeth
Rather than Russell Crowe being the new Marlon Brando, Crowe seems more similar to Richard Burton. —Don Woods