Saturday, June 11, 2016

Trapped on a Boat With Billy Zane, or Thoughts on Nicole Kidman in Dead Calm

From a 1969 novel that Orson Welles wanted to film, Dead Calm (1989) has a nice Hitchcock vibe; a tense drama with three actors and one set, it could easily be a stage play.  It’s an old story; a couple goes out on their gorgeous 50-foot sailboat to save their troubled marriage and pick up a handsome shipwreck survivor who turns out to be a charming psychopath.  The film is best remembered as Nicole Kidman’s breakout role, her first US hit that catapulted her into international stardom.  22 at the time, she was not the screen goddess you think of when you hear the name Nicole Kidman, but rather a fresh-faced red-headed aussie girl that’s handy with a spear-gun.
New Zealand actor Sam Neil, who you know and love as Dr. Richard Grant, but you may not recall made his US screen debut as the son of the devil in Omen III: The Final Conflict (1981), plays her estranged husband.  Billy Zane, who can’t help but act like a dick on a boat in movies like Titanic (1997) but got his screen debut in Back to the Future (1985) before starring in Twin Peaks, Tombstone (1993) and Zoolander (2001) plays the charming psychopath.

my first novel? thanks for asking:) I wrote a 4 book supernatural martial arts series concerning the ongoing feud between a group of kung-fu killer witches in san francsico’s chinatown.