A farewell to the West Coast Orso
The announcement that the Academy Awards will be helmed by two famous actors — Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin — comes as a surprise, but a delightful one.Just as Fred gave Ginger “class” and Ginger gave Fred “sex appeal,” these two very different kind of guys should make a team that spells “relief,” each from the other. (Steve is intellectual, cold, mysterious and not entirely human — Alec is earthy, gutsy, impulsive, entirely human!) And while I’m at it, I wonder, where is the big magazine evaluation of Baldwin and his so-called comeback to popularity and the bigtime acceptance of the public at large? Only a few years ago, he had been thoroughly demonized after his tempestuous divorce from Kim Basinger, her unending attacks on him and then his blow-up over voicemail with his daughter. People then all seemed to miss the fact that he was only human, under pressure, refusing to give up his right to see his child, continuing to work without ceasing as a journeyman actor. But reputation-wise, he couldn’t get himself arrested. Well, I was always in this guy’s corner, and it is so nice to see him finally getting the recognition he deserves for his unrelenting talent, sense of responsibility and his stardom on “30 Rock,” which was all too long in coming. The last time I sat in the West Coast Orso garden, I was with the wonderful Roddy McDowall, who regaled me with anecdotes about La La Land stars. He’d been a child star who knew everyone in the world. He is missed, and Orso will be as well!