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Posts Tagged ‘James Garner’

Matt Weiner Revisits the Casting of Don Draper

Mad Men creator Matt Weiner was on Dennis Miller’s radio show today, basking in the after-glow of Sunday’s fifth season debut. The AMC series is Miller’s favorite program, and at one point the conversation drifted to the casting of Jon Hamm as Don Draper.

Weiner recalled that at the time of the pilot, the Hollywood trend was for anti-leading men protagonists such as Seth Rogen, and that Hamm was struggling to gain traction. When asked who he originally envisioned as Draper, Weiner told Miller he appropriately reached way back:

“When my casting director asked me who I wanted for the role, I was like, ‘Honestly, I’ve narrowed it down to two people – get me William Holden or James Garner…’ They’re like, ‘You can’t say that.’”

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James Garner is His Own Worst Critic

Like most actors, James Garner is not particularly fond of a lot of his work. As he tells CBS News ahead of tomorrow’s arrival of his autobiography The Garner Files, he rates only two of his big screen efforts as being excellent.

What is atypical however is the way the 83-year-old actor and co-author Jon Winokur have chosen to convey this information. As New York Post movie critic Lou Lumenick was one of the first to note, Garner has basically gone Leonard Maltin on himself:

This is the first movie star biography I’ve seen where an actor provides capsule reviews of all his movies. Even more unusually, Garner rates all but one of them from zero to five stars. The ones he rates most highly are The Americanization of Emily (1964) and The Notebook (2004) with five stars…

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