The New York Times has an excellent article up by Laura M. Holson called "A Little Too Ready For Her Close-Up?" that takes a close look at a new trend in Hollywood. For years it seems that the place where dreams are born had become the place where dreams are stabbed in the face with a needle at the first sign of a wrinkle. I couldn't tell you when Hollywood's obsession with plastic surgery began, but at some point it became a self-perpetuating machine where each generation of actors, in an attempt to look better than the previous generation, went under the scalpel earlier and more often. But now, according to Holson and the filmmakers she talked to, it seems that the plastic surgery bubble has either already burst or is in the process of doing so.

Many have no doubt noticed the recent rise in British and Australian actors taking on American roles (even more so in television than in movies), but Holson says that isn't due to the imported talents being better thespians; rather it's because these actors hail from countries that aren't quite so scalpel happy. Casting directors are starting to greatly prefer the more natural look over the Hollywood standard - remember the "no fake breasts" mandate for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides? - and the reason is not surprising in the least.

The rapid adoption of high definition has turned living rooms everywhere into examination rooms. Before actors could, for the most part, get away with poor plastic surgery because their imperfect attempts at perfection were protected miraculously by standard definition. But now that picture quality is sharper than ever, Holson notes "the ability to crumple a mouth into a frown is as vital as remembering one's lines."
categories Cinematical