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IT Ingenue

Antonio Banderas

Antonio Banderas
Image credit: Antonio Banderas Photograph by Robert Maxwell

Antonio Banderas made EW's It List

Age 42

Why Him? Banderas was one ''Femme Fatale'' away from silver-screen oblivion (see wicked parody on ''Saturday Night Live'')...until he stepped on stage at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre and reinvented himself as a Broadway leading man. As star of the musical ''Nine,'' he's racked up awards (Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle) and accolades (a Tony nomination) for his turn as Guido Contini, an Italian film director surrounded -- and suffocated -- by 16 women.

Shuffling Off to Buffalo ''You should have seen me [at] the premiere. I wanted to escape -- I mean literally run, run, run. Exactly like Guido.''

There Is Nothin' Like a Dame Banderas' costars include Chita Rivera, Jane Krakowski, and a slew of other musical-theater veterans. ''So they have a lot of talent,'' he says.

Encore, Encore! ''I don't want to be a movie actor who comes to Broadway, makes an entrance, puts a flag, goes away, and doesn't come back,'' says Banderas, contemplating a Great White Way return.

His Fair Lady While he admires ''typical Broadway actors'' like Bernadette Peters and Nathan Lane, he really wants to costar with someone he knows a little better: ''I want to work with my wife [Melanie Griffith] on Broadway!''

Next HBO's ''And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself'' (airing in September); filming the sequel to ''The Mask of Zorro'' -- ''everybody would be back except for Anthony Hopkins, who got killed in the original''; and a movie with Pedro Almodóvar, their first collaboration in 13 years.

Originally posted Jun 19, 2003
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