Someone -- was it Cary Grant? -- described the arc of celebrity in three steps: 1) Who's Cary Grant? 2) Get me Cary Grant! 3) Get me a younger Cary Grant. For the moviegoer, the dance from introduction to acclimation can take five steps, which weirdly, conform to Elisabeth Kubler-Ross' five stages of grief, only with a happy ending.
I did this dance with Meg Ryan, Will Smith and Johnny Depp. Now I'm doing it with Anne Hathaway whose film One Day opens today.
First, Denial: Who says this kid with the freakishly large facial features can act? (The Princess Diaries.)
Second, Anger: Just because The Princess Diaries was a hit, the studios are going to foist Miss Needy Puppy on us again and again? (The Princess Diaries 2, Ella Enchanted.)
Third, Ambivalence: Hmm. This kid is capable of creating a character. (The Devil Wears Prada, Brokeback Mountain, Rachel Getting Married.)
Fourth, Horror: Make. Her. Stop. Now. (Bride Wars.)
Fifth, Acceptance: (Love and Other Drugs).
Your thoughts on the five steps to stardom? Sometimes a new personality is like a new food, it takes time to develop a taste for him or her. Your thoughts on Hathaway? Other actors who it took time to appreciate?