Movie Article

Right Winger

Which forgotten actor deserves a comeback? EW movie critic Owen Gleiberman answers reader questions

Debra Winger, Terms of Endearment | ON HER OWN 'TERMS' Winger left Hollywood after facing a lack of meaty roles in her age range
Image credit: Terms of Endearment: Photofest
ON HER OWN 'TERMS' Winger left Hollywood after facing a lack of meaty roles in her age range

Which forgotten actor deserves a comeback?

What actor do you think deserves to have a big comeback opportunity, à la John Travolta in ''Pulp Fiction''? -- Christopher

How about Debra Winger, the most captivating actress of the early Travolta era? In movies like ''Urban Cowboy,'' ''An Officer and a Gentleman,'' and ''Terms of Endearment,'' she had a singular earthy vitality -- a mixture of playfulness and smarts and sexual charisma unmatched by virtually any actress today. (At moments, Gwyneth Paltrow comes close.) Winger more or less dropped out of movies in the mid-'90s, almost as a protest against Hollywood's appalling marginalization of actresses over the age of 40. Her screen resurrection, however, could deal a fatal blow to that stigma. Here's how it might work: An adventurous and highly sensually attuned American filmmaker -- ''Boys Don't Cry'''s Kimberly Peirce, say, or maybe Paul Thomas Anderson -- places Winger at the center of a galvanizing erotic drama. She could flame her way right back into moviegoers' hearts.

(Got a movie-related question for Owen Gleiberman or Lisa Schwarzbaum? Post it here.)

Originally posted Jul 16, 2004 Published in issue #774 Jul 16, 2004 Order article reprints
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