Cate Blanchett, an actress in the power of art

There are gifted people and there are others. Cate Blanchett is convinced of belonging to the second category, of those who, because they have no particular talent, let alone genius, must work intensely, laboriously. This impression, she does not take offense and faces it with serenity. And, by a mirror effect, she is passionate about gifted people. Because they are better than her, in her eyes, able to teach her a profitable lesson, and they are also more fragile.

This is what strikes her when she thinks back to her character of Lydia Tár, the conductor of a great German symphony orchestra, at the height of her career, in full preparation for a highly anticipated concert of the 5e Symphony by Gustav Mahler. To interpret the main role of Tar, the new film by Todd Field (in theaters on January 25), the Australian actress imagined, as usual, biographical elements absent from the screenplay. Details, visible only to her, which she always writes down on a sheet of paper. As if to materialize her work, since, for Cate Blanchett, acting is above all writing.

When we interview her, she also pulls out a sheet of paper to retrace her career. As if that reassured her and attested to her intense work. A broad smile appears on the face of the star of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008), by David Fincher, or carol (2015), by Todd Haynes. Like these significant roles that she embodied, she built the one she interpreted in front of the Todd Field camera like a house, with floors and hidden nooks. Of course, the character of Lydia Tár is first the fruit of the imagination of the American director and screenwriter, but his interpreter has refined and refined it.

The refinement of detail

In the ecosystem of Hollywood stars, Cate Blanchett occupies the place formerly devolved to Meryl Streep, that of a great actress capable of being able to play everything. Her career on the big screen, but also on stage – she once directed alongside her husband, director Andrew Upton, the Sydney Theater Company – proves it. The many accolades garnered over the years – Oscar for Best Supporting Actress (Airman, by Martin Scorsese, 2004), and Best Actress (Blue Jasmine, by Woody Allen, 2013), double prize for interpretation at the Venice Film Festival (I’m Not There, by Todd Haynes, 2007, and Tar), Golden Globe for his performances in elizabeth (1998), by Shekhar Kapur, I’m Not There, Blue Jasmine and Tar – cemented her status as an actress recognized by her peers. With Todd Field’s film, which could earn her a third Oscar in March, Cate Blanchett seems to have taken another step further, as it seems that only a very talented actress could lend her face to such a complex character.

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