Judith Shulevitz

Close-up: John Leguizamo

It may come as a surprise to people who saw John Leguizamo’s Off Broadway Mambo Mouth — seven stinging profiles of Hispanic men ranging from a macho cable-TV king to a transvestite hooker with lip — but this 27-year-old from Jackson Heights, Queens, claims to have a lot in common with Johnny, the shy, depressed Bronx teenager he played to critical raves in this spring’s film Hangin’ With the Homeboys. ”I am kind of quiet, actually,” says Leguizamo.

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''An Angel at My Table''

Filmmaker Jane Campion (Sweetie, 1990) was a teenager when she read Owls Do Cry, the first novel of fellow New Zealander Janet Frame. With an ardor perhaps only an adolescent could muster, Campion identified. Detailing the inner life of a troubled girl in a small New Zealand town, the novel described ”madness, real madness,” says Campion. ”It had an almost spiritual flow, a poetic quality to it.

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