Thursday, August 18, 2016

Robert Redford Turns 80 Today

I met him once. I was a flunkie in an Off-Broadway house staff and he was producing a play upstairs in the same building, I happened to be spazzing in the lobby after curtain-up when he came in off of the street and punched the up button on the elevator. No doubt he hoped to slip into and then out of the little theatre upstairs unnoticed. It was a dark and stormy night. I wonder how many of his fans realize that he's only 4 feet tall? With some short actors, like Tom Cruise, they don't try to hide their actual size in their movies. With others, like Redford, they do. All the President's Men, for instance: they made Redford appear to be a foot taller than Dustin Hoffman, and that simply can't be true. In the title of another movie, Little Fauss and Big Halsy, Redford is actually referred to as "big." I'm telling you, once you're aware that he's a little person, watching Redford's movies becomes an entirely different experience. You become aware that almost every shot is an exercise in distortion and deception. Nothing wrong with that. That's what the movies have always been.

We didn't speak during our brief encounter, but Redford stared fiercely at me as if to say, "If you ever tell anyone, I'll find you and kill you!"

I wasn't too alarmed. I'm quite a large person and I wasn't afraid of an angry elf trying to kill me. Redford would've have to climb a ladder just to try to punch me in the face. And it wasn't as if I'd done anything wrong anyway. I hadn't harmed the little leprochaun.

Anyway, he's quite a good actor even if he is overrated as a director and extremely short. I appreciate all of the liberal activism too, sincerely. Happy Birthday, little guy!

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