Monday, February 3, 2014

Is Scarlett Johansson Commoditized?

            One of the best films this year was “Her,” as it won a Golden Globe and is up for several awards from the Academy.  Joaquin Phoenix was nominated for his performance, but unfortunately Scarlett Johansson was snubbed for hers, due to the lack of her being physically in the film.

            “Her” is about a man who falls in love with his Operating System, Samantha (voiced by Johansson) who is designed to meet his every need.  Through her presence learns about the evolving nature of love.    She wasn’t originally cast as Samantha; screenwriter and director Spike Jonze felt that the previously chosen voice just didn’t feel right.  So, he got a hold of Johansson and recorded all of Samantha’s lines with her.  They fit much better, as her distinctive voice made for a sexy computer.  Her performance voice-acting was excellent.  However, it is a Golden Globe regulation not to nominate someone because their voice was in a film alone for an acting award. 

            I mean, the film was a hit or miss overall with the Academy. Unfortunately, as great as it was, the other films out this year just dominated all of them. 

Although she is known partially for her voice as being husky (people often would ask her if she needed water, and she would be so confused) yet seductive, people often think of her physically whenever people bring up Scarlett Johansson.  She could quite possibly be one of the most commoditized women in Hollywood because of this.  She oftentimes plays characters older than her actual age.  For example, in “Lost in Translation” she was only 18 years old.  Being known for your looks is how you get somewhere, as far as acting goes.  However, even if you do have a very distinctive voice (like Johansson), sometimes you can miss out.

In 2005, she was ranked as #9 in FHM's 100 Sexiest Women in the World; she was also the highest ranking new entry to the list.  The year after, she was chosen by Esquire magazine as the Sexiest Woman Alive.    She has been on many of these kinds of lists up to today, even.  Johansson was also chosen in a poll conducted by Glamour Magazine of 5000 people by having the “World’s Sexiest Body.”  Her accolades go on and on.   

Many of her films also recognize her as the sexy, beautiful actress in it.  Some examples are “The Prestige,” “We Bought a Zoo,” “The Avengers” and “Vicky Christina Barcelona.”  Her on screen presence is hard to ignore. 

More recently, there has been some controversy about the latest promotion poster for the “Captain America: the Winter Soldier” film.  People argue that she didn’t need to be photo shopped for it, and her poster is getting more social media attention than it should.    The film is “Captain America” after all, not “Black Widow…and Captain America too.” 

Even though she is becoming an iconic figure (which, is a good thing for her career), Scarlett Johansson isn’t being recognized for her work in “Her.”  Her lack of a physical presence cost her a nomination for the Golden Globes, along with the Academy Awards. 

1 comment:

  1. If you haven't seen Under the Skin you should. It's some of her best work.