Maybe the most spectacular recent example of a young American movie and television actor tackling a classical part is Amy Acker's radiant Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, Joss Whedon's nimble, and very faithful, 2012 movie of one of Shakespeare's sprightliest comedies. Acker was always a welcome presence on TV shows such as Angel and Alias; in her current series gig, as the blithely lethal hacker known as Root on Person of Interest, she displays the ability to alternate a near-sociopathic sangfroid with unexpected bursts of genuine passion-and she has the best walk on television, besides. But her facility with the tricky verse of Shakespearean comedy is a real surprise; she's at least as formidable a Beatrice as Emma Thompson was in Branagh's 1993 Much Ado, and Acker is, I think, more touching and finally more believable.
June 23 2015
Amy Acker gets a wonderful shout-out in this month's The Atlantic for her performance in Much Ado. The article laments the decline of the American actor, but comments that, "a handful of younger American actors, mostly women, have been able to stretch themselves in parts like that onscreen."
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