April 3, 2013 at 8:32 am #543801
I’m making this poll hard. You must pick only one even if you can state a case for all.
Personally, I find myself tempted to pick all of them! If forced to pick, however, I’d pick perseverance. I think that’s really what it takes to become a legend. Obviously, the other options factor in but if you can’t persevere, fuggedaboutit.
To further expound, I’ll use my two favorite examples in cinema history.
Jessica Lange & Meryl Streep. These two titans are iconoclastic, to say the least. They both are beautiful, talented beyond compare, have wonderfully different personalities that nonetheless draw you in – Streep with her humor and benevolence; Lange with her quietness and elusiveness. They also both have impressive bodies of work, though I’d say Streep has the larger body of work – by nearly 50%! – and a resume filled with hits and classics; while Lange’s resume is substantially smaller and lacking in hits and classics. Both struggled with their beauty: Lange to transcend hers and Streep to establish hers and both have persevered.
Streep perservered through all things all women over 40 have to learn to conquer or transcend in Hollywood in order to survive. Lange did as well, though she’s made it harder on herself by her periodic use of botox. Nonetheless, both have perservered probably more so than any of their peers or anyone else that came before them.
Another thing Iove about them is that neither of them took projects for the fame or money. It was always to tackle a new acting challenge or other.April 3, 2013 at 8:42 am #543803
I chose the same, when you’re the only one left standing they hire you.April 3, 2013 at 12:31 pm #543804
I pciked Body of Work over Talkent since i think consistency is huge. I mean you can be talented like Hilary Swank and diminsh your value in slop. So having a strong body of work like DDL and Streep is what makes one a legend.April 3, 2013 at 6:21 pm #543805
I picked Body of work…… but that does not mean you have to be “Pretty” or “Hot”. When it comes down to it, people will not remember you for your beauty (unless you die young…. like monroe), people and especially artists will remember you for your talent/body of work.April 4, 2013 at 3:48 am #543806
I picked Body of work…… but that does not mean you have to be “Pretty” or “Hot”. When it comes down to it, people will not remember you for your beauty (unless you die young…. like monroe), people and especially artists will remember you for your talent/body of work.
True, but food for thought: how many projects have been considered crap until being rediscovered years later and recategorized as classics or great? Answer: lots. That’s why I find that determining a legend by an artist’s “body of work” doesn’t cut it. One minute their body of work could be considered crap the next it can be revered specifically and only because of the artist.
Example: an actor/actress can star in a 3-5 classics in one year – they got lucky – and yet that still wouldn’t make them a legend. Also, the artist may not have even contributed significantly to the classics on their resume, does that mean they still should be given credit? So many factors when checking off body of work…April 4, 2013 at 3:18 pm #543807
Perseverance.April 4, 2013 at 4:55 pm #543808
You can have a SINGLE good performance and that would not be enough to make a legend out of you (Marlee Matlin, the case).
And, plus, LEGENDS are old. Old, old, old.
When people say Nicole Kidman is a legend, I say, LMAO. I love her but she’s no legend.
A legend is someone like Olivia de Havilland, Lauren Bacall, or even Meryl Streep (Who is in her 60s, I guess, and 60s is not old at all).
The older you are, the closer to legend you become.April 5, 2013 at 10:52 pm #543809
The 60s, are where you begin to think of a person as old, not older, old.April 6, 2013 at 7:29 am #543810
Wow, I’m surprised so many people are underestimating the importance of personality. It is essential to being perceived as a legend. It gives someone character and makes them different in the eyes of the public, unique and timeless as the person ages. Meryl Streep, for instance, has only recently reached legend status over the last decade, as she finally connected with a large audience for the first time in her career. She’s more popular now than she has ever been. Daniel Day-Lewis, on the otherhand, is not quite on a first-name basis with the world, which is usually something that denotes a legend; playing Lincoln certainly helped—my family had no idea who he was before that movie. Look at some other actors: Marilyn Monroe–we all know what she exudes. Grace Kelly. Jack Nicholson. Sean Connery. Robert DeNiro. Al Pacino. Katharine Hepburn. Bette Davis….these people all have a sharply defined persona, which, when combined with an iconic role or screen presence, made them legendary actors. It typically comes down to the personality, first and foremost. Someone can be consistently great for their entire career and pick great material, but they must have that star quality that made them resonate to be a legend. It’s a small group.