Humanity Over Art

Isabelle CarreI watched the short interview below with Isabelle Carre from the promotion of Romantics Anonymous, that I’ve already written about. I was really struck by something she said in the interview. She was talking about going to an actual RA meeting and how she didn’t want to go. Even though she is also shy, she felt that she was only going to the meeting as a kind of preparation for the role. She said,”I did not want to go because I was thinking that I did not want to use the fragility of the people at the meetings because they suffer. To use this felt wrong to me, or manipulative.”

This really struck me, because I remember hearing an interview with Sidney Lumet about Serpico. He talked about how Al Pacino had hung out with the real Frank Serpico. Apparently, Serpico had thought that he and Pacino had become friends, when it was just work for Pacino. Lumet told this story in a prideful way. Sort of: we in Hollywood really are American royalty. He told the story even while admitting that Frank Serpico was a really interesting, knowledgeable, and funny guy. I was horrified by both Al Pacino’s behavior and Sidney Lumet’s telling of the story.

I have a great love of art. (Of course, I’m not sure if what they do in Hollywood should be considered art.) But to place art above humanity strikes me as one of the vilest things imaginable. It was nice to hear one of the stars of one of the sweetest films I have ever seen confirm this. Carre goes on to explain that once she did go to the meeting, she found that she fit right in. These two facts may be related. Anyway, I’ve always thought that to become a Hollywood star, you kind of have to be a dick. If humanity is to survive, it is no surprise to find that it does so primarily outside the United States.

Here is the interview, which is just over 4 minutes long:

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

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