In Depth With Penelope Cruz


In the November issue of Vanity Fair, author Ingrid Sischy profiles Penelope Cruz and how she used her Spanish roots to inspire her performances in Broken Embraces and Nine. 


Cruz stars in her fourth film with Spanish director Pedro Almodovar in Broken Embraces and in Rob Marshall's song and dance extravaganza, Nine, both due out this month.


Cruz starred in numerous Spanish films at the beginning of her career including Belle Epoque, Jamon, Jamon, A Tale of Ham and Passion; Ham, Ham, and Salami Salami. Her breakout performances in Live Flesh and All About My Mother made her a rising star to be watched.


Hollywood began casting Cruz as a leading lady in big-budget films in the early 1990s, but they were mostly flops.  Director Pedro Almodovar explains the lack of success as a result of American directors who cast Cruz for her beauty, and not her ability.


In 2006, Almodovar cast Cruz in Volver, which "relaunched Cruz as an actress, not just a movie star." Cruz's performance earned her the first Oscar nomination for best actress for a Spanish actress. Her Volver performance also inspired Woody Allen to cast her in his film Vicky Cristina Barcelona, which would become her first successful American film.


Almodovar uses Cruz's depth as a dramatic actress in his film, Broken Embraces. Cruz plays Lena, the girlfriend of a rich, controlling man who makes it possible for her to star in a movie. However, Lena and the director of the film begin a liaison that has tragic consequences. Cruz said the role was one of the most demanding she has taken on.


Rob Marshall's Nine is more upbeat and features a star-studded cast including Nicole Kidman, Fergie, Kate Hudson, and Daniel Day Lewis. Cruz plays Carla, a tender but temp mistress to Lewis's character. Nine is the first time Cruz will be able to show off her singing skills in the vocal number "A Call From the Vatican."

"Penelope was born to be an actress," says Almodóvar, who knows her better than anyone in the business. "She is someone who is extremely emotional, and if she was not an actress it could be a problem for her."


This article began with a five-paragraph anecdote about an encounter the author had with Cruz years ago. While humorous, the story added nothing to the body of the feature and was longer than was needed. I thought that the story could have been left out of the article completely. 



This article is fascinating! I really liked how the author painted a vivid picture of who this actress really is, without leaving out a lot of details. The paragraph that talked about her unique beauty was head on.
I think the story in the intro was a bit long, it took up about 3-4 long paragraphs. I was interested in the story the first 2 paragraphs but then it started to get boring. Penelope seems like an amazing woman. I would love to meet her someday!

I really enjoyed reading Ingrid Sischy's profile on Penelope Cruz as well. I didn't know a whole lot about Cruz before reading the article but now I feel like I know her life story. I loved how the author focused not only on Cruz's career, but also on who she is as a person. Articles that expose who celebrities are on a personal level are always the most interesting because it makes the reader feel like they know the person.

I think you did a great job capturing what the article was about, but I would have like to see a little less summary and a little more of your take on it. I loved how you used so many quotes from the article. Also, I agree on the anecdote at the beginning being too long. However, I wouldn't eliminate the anecdote altogether, because I feel like it did a good job of pulling the reader into the piece.

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This page contains a single entry by Carly published on December 2, 2009 4:04 PM.

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