There are a lot of actors who inspire me (Richard Gere, Julia Roberts, Eric Roberts, Sandra Bullock, Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn, William Holden and Ingrid Bergman, just to name a few), but there is one actor who doesn’t get nearly enough credit for his versatile and often dramatic acting and that is Billy Zane. Not only is he easy on the eyes (omg, but he is!), but he can step into any role, be it a villain, a romantic lead or a classical character. He usually plays over the top roles and adds his own dramatic flare to them. The first time I laid eyes on him was in the Back to the Future movies. I was spell-bound! Who was this gorgeous man and would he marry me? *laughs* And then I started seeing him not so much from his physical appearance and began paying attention to his acting style. I was blown away by his role in Dead Calm, as Hughie Warriner . Although he played a crazed psycho, I kept thinking to myself if I were to ever be kidnapped, I would want it to be by him (Zane and Warriner!). The next role that I saw him in was in Titanic. While most people’s eyes were on Leonardo DiCaprio, mine were on Billy Zane. His role as Cal Hockley was devious and so well done. He really does have the villain down to a science. I’ve seen in him in dozens of movies and television shows (remember him in Twin Peaks? awesome!) but the one television role that I enjoyed the most was as Drake, the ex-demon, on Charmed. What fun it must have been to play that role. If you haven’t seen him in it, he played a teacher at the magic school and had quite the dramatic flare, reading poetry and acting like a classic Shakespearean actor. Brilliant!
And because you can never get too much of Billy Zane….
So what is it about this great actor that inspires me so much? His versatility, his charm, and his ability to get into a psychological mindset to play the roles he has. Any time I write a villain, you can bet there are Zane qualities in there.
Here are a few quotes of his:
And a few videos:
You may want to turn the volume down on this one. The background music is insanely loud:
And keep it down for this one too:
Interesting Facts: Billy Zane is of Greek descent and his family name is actually Zanetakos, but his father anglicized it to Zane when they came to the US. In November 2010, he was awarded an honorary degree from Lium University, Bellinzona, Switzerland, for his contribution to cinematography. He is the chairman of the Francesco Fucilla Film production company 21st Century Filmworks. Zane has starred in 98 films and comprised 35 television roles. (source)