Best Acting Friendships in Recent Hollywood

 

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone

Emma and Ryan

-2011- Crazy, Stupid, Love
The first production they worked on together was a romantic comedy about the love lives of three characters. Ryan and Emma play love interests, Emma being the hard to get girl at the bar, Ryan being the suave ladies’ man no one but her can resist. The chemistry  was evident quickly in the audition process according to director Glenn Ficarrawas. “We had narrowed down to a few incredibly talented candidates for Emma’s part. They all read with Ryan, [who] was off screen, and I think in most cases they were a little taken by Ryan’s presence, so nervous at the sight of Ryan. When Emma came in, she sat down, she was ready to go; Ryan walked in, immediately flubbed his first line, and she just laid into him, like, ‘Oh, you’re killing this buddy.’ She was the only one not to be intimidated by him, and in that moment John and I knew.” Emma has even commented on this moment saying “The moment he walked into the audition of Crazy, Stupid, Love, we had an unspoken understanding of each other.”
-2013- Gangster Squad
A Crime film set in 1949 tells the fictional story of a group of LA law enforcement that goes after gangs. The film has a strong cast including Josh Brolin, Nick Nolte, and Sean Penn. “We had to be serious in this movie; that was very hard for us,” Gosling joked about the transition from playing a comedic couple to the more dramatic.
-2016- La La Land

The two then took on one of the most game-changing roles in either of their careers. Stone plays a struggling actress and Gosling her love interest, a struggling Jazz musician. The musical movie is a gorgeous look at present day LA through the lens of old Hollywood with its dance numbers and subtle ballads. Damian has said that “The idea was to play on the fact that we know them as a pair — there was something a little bit Fred and Ginger, or William Powell and Myrna Loy, or Hepburn/Tracy, or more recently Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan, about them. Back then it was a little more common to see these recurring pairs. I liked that idea, that sort of tradition.”

Simon Pegg and Nick Frost 

Nick and Simon

 

-2004- Shaun of the Dead
The two had been friends long before, meeting in their early twenties via a friend who thought they would bond over their love of comedy. The two also worked together on a UK sitcom called Spaced. This film was actually pitched by Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright, and of course he wanted to cast his best mate as his fictional best mate. The decision proved a good one.
-2007- Hot Fuzz
The second of four films that Edgar Wright and the duo collaborated on. Pegg plays a no-nonsense London Police Officer transferred to a small British village right before a slew of mysterious activity. Frost always felt he had creative freedom when working with Pegg. Even though I didn’t write Shaun Of The Dead and Hot Fuzz, I never felt left out of the creative process. I think that if I did, I would have pushed a bit harder, but I was always included.” 
-2007- Grindhouse
A double feature horror film made by Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino, the team gets together again for a trailer that is put in between the films. Edgar Wright directed the segment, starring a slew of other actors including Will Arnett, Mark Gatiss, and Jason Isaacs.
-2011-Paul
The duo actually wrote this film together, a story that sprung from a drawing Frost had done years ago. It’s about two “loser” friends who find an alien and the adventures that ensue from it. During the press tour, Pegg had this to say about his ‘written in the stars’ love for Nick Frost.“It’s about the mathematics of fate, I think what people mistake for fate is actually a logarithm of interests and coincidences that brings you into the orbit of people who are like-minded; that’s how you make your friends.
-2013- The Worlds End
A bromance movie like the other two films Edgar Wright directed with Pegg and Frost, the film follows Pegg as he enlists his old drinking buddies on one more pub crawl in their hometown. Of course, the plot goes from simple to insane as the night is derailed by the discovery of an alien invasion.  This film required a large amount of preparation from the actors, as they trained in stunt fighting and took what they called a “drunken master class” on how to act out the various stages of inebriation. Wright commented on this, saying Whatever people think of our movies, they cannot say that we are not meticulous.”
-2018- Slaughterhouse Rulez
The latest film the two have been in together is a horror comedy that mostly follows the students of a boarding school in Britain after a vicious beast runs loose and begins a rampage. This film is set to be released Halloween of this year.
It’s been said that the two are now working on a horror comedy TV show as well, so this is far from the last we will see of the friends.

Kate Winslet and Leonardo Dicaprio

Leo and Kate

-1997- Titanic
One of the most iconic movies to ever grace the screen, Titanic is a story we all know well. Boat sinks, over a thousand die after the ship hits an iceberg. The film is a fictional love story set on the ship in the journey before the disaster. The chemistry and skill of their acting really gave the movie its shining centerpiece.  When asked about this at the time, Leo told Entertainment Weekly:
“She’s such a terrific person in general that our chemistry naturally happened on screen. We just like each other as people. As far as doing a love scene, though, we laughed about it a lot,”
Kate had also gushed about her costar’s personality and talent:
“I was like probably how all the women in this audience are, about Leonardo DiCaprio. Initially  I thought, ‘Ugh, how am I gonna work with this beautiful man who’s such a brilliant actor?’ And I met him and he’s honestly so lovely and down-to-earth and normal and so good at what he does.”
-2008- Revolutionary Road
Their second and final film collaboration (so far) was based on the book of the same name by Justin Haythe, a dramatic character study of a married couple getting worn thin by the suburban lifestyle. The film is actually directed by her husband at the time, Sam Mendes. The raw talent and skill that the two bring to the screen is jaw dropping.  During the press tour for the film, Winslet and Dicaprio had nothing but compliments for each other. Leo remarked She’s still as beautiful and radiant as the day I met her. She is the consummate professional; she keeps pushing herself to an emotional truth when she’s working. That’s why I keep saying she’s the best. Kate Winslet won a Golden Globe for the part, and was sure to mention her costar and close friend in her speech; “Leo, I’m so happy I can stand here and tell you how much I love you and how much I’ve loved you for 13 years…I love you with all my heart, I really do.” 
The duo may not have made any films together lately but the pair are very close and still hang out and quote Titanic lines back and forth with each other.

 

Emma Thompson and Alan Rickman

Alan and Emma

-1995- Sense and Sensibility.
The first production the two worked together on was a film adaptation of the beloved Jane Austen novel of the same name. The screenplay was actually adapted and written by Thompson herself after five years of revisions. The film was a commercial success and became the film that really pushed the two co-workers’ careers.
-1997- The Winter Guest
Their second film was adapted from a play Rickman had written two years earlier with Sharman Macdonald. It tells the story of several characters during one winter’s day in Scotland. Most of the cast from the stage had taken the film roles as well but it was set in stone that there would be a role for Emma. Rickman had said; “Whenever the film version came up, it was sort of automatically assumed that Emma would do it.” 
-1997- Judas Kiss
Straight after the success of The Winter Guest, the two were put into their third production together, a cop thriller that had little going for it (based on reviews) except for Thompson and Rickman.
-2003- Love Actually
This collaboration is a personal favorite of mine, and by far the best Christmas movie ever. (Debate me, I dare you.) It tells the story of a British Christmas season through the stories of a number of characters, all somehow connected. Out of all the plots in this ensemble film, Alan and Emma give the most honest and raw performances of the bunch.
-2010-The Song of Lunch
The two starred together in this adaptation of a Christopher Reid poem, where the two play former flames meeting up for lunch. The film may not have amazing or well received but the chemistry and built up dynamic between the two actors shows their talent and bond.
This list could include the three Harry Potter films that Thompson plays Professor Trelawney with Rickman as Severus Snape but they don’t interact enough for their chemistry to show.  After his death, Thompson had this to say:

“Alan was my friend and so this is hard to write because I have just kissed him goodbye.
What I remember most in this moment of painful leave-taking is his humour, intelligence, wisdom, and kindness. His capacity to fell you with a look or lift you with a word.
That intransigence which made him the great artist that he was — his ineffable and cynical wit, the clarity with which he saw most things, including me, and the fact that he never spared me the view. I learned a lot from him.
He was the finest of actors and directors. I couldn’t wait to see what he was going to do with his face next. I consider myself hugely privileged to have worked with him so many times and to have been directed by him.
He was the ultimate ally. In life, art and politics. I trusted him absolutely.
He was, above all things, a rare and unique human being and we shall not see his like again.”

 

What are your top acting friendships?

 

Bibliography

Alexander, Bryan. “’The World’s End’ Does Drunk Acting Right.” USA Today, Gannett Satellite Information Network, 22 Aug. 2013, www.usatoday.com/story/life/movies/2013/08/22/worlds-end-simon-pegg-nick-frost/2594583/.

Roberts, Kayleigh. “A History of Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet’s Incredible Friendship.” ELLE, 11 Oct. 2017, www.elle.com/culture/celebrities/news/g30279/leonardo-dicaprio-kate-winslets-friendship/.

Valentine, Genevieve. “Love, Actually: The Artistic Friendship of Alan Rickman and Emma Thompson.” AV Club, Film.avclub.com, 23 Aug. 2017, film.avclub.com/love-actually-the-artistic-friendship-of-alan-rickman-1798243554.

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