When Journalists Try to Become Stars

By Jack Limpert

The movie “Sideways” stars Paul Giamatti as a divorced English teacher who has written a novel and is touring California’s wine country with a pal while waiting for his agent to sell the novel to a publisher. It’s a good movie but two hours and seven minutes long and by the end Giamatti, a noted character actor, is increasingly hard to look at and listen to. Enough of this guy.

Character actors, like Giamatti, are known for a distinctive look or voice and are effective in supporting roles, but not in starring roles.

Watching Giamatti in “Sideways,” I couldn’t help thinking that almost all journalists are like character actors—best in supporting roles. But when they try to become stars, they often get tiresome.

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