She has a fanciful face imbued by a lively mystique from years of perfectly natural performances. Meryl Streep is an American actress who made her debut in 1977 and since then marked American culture. Streep has won two Academy Awards as well as 15 Oscar nominations and 23 Golden Globe nominations (more than any other actor in the history of either award). “I’m here under false pretenses,” Streep told a packed crowd at Princeton University on November 30th 1996. “My achievement, if you can call it that, is that I’ve basically pretended to be extraordinary people my entire life, and now I’m being mistaken for one.”
“She broke the glass ceiling of an older woman being a big star. It has never, never happened before,” says Mike Nichols, who directed Streep in Silkwood. (Bennetts)
This transition into her characters is easier to take than understanding the razor-sharp edge of Streepʼs acting abilities. She has a pinpoint accuracy when it comes to interpreting any role. She has seamlessly made the atrociously high-priced popcorn and four dollar fountain beverages almost bearable. Many studio executives have been privately convinced that it wasn’t worth even a modest budget to make films about women, particularly older ones, and they seem stunned that a series of movies about middle-aged women racked up such enviable grosses. (Skow)
At an age when women have traditionally been relegated to playing old hags, Meryl Streep has become a star at the box office. “It’s incredible. I’m 60, and I’m playing the romantic lead in romantic comedies!” Streep exclaims. “Bette Davis is rolling over in her grave. She was 42 when she did All About Eve, and she was 54 when she did What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?” said Streep.
Streep has certainly redefined what Hollywood views as the peak of a woman’s acting career. Although, the real world has always offered more possibilities than Hollywood has. “The movie business which long assumed that success lay in making films aimed at young men has reacted to such eye-popping numbers with bemused consternation.” (Bennetts) Streep has become a star for her ability to vanish into characters flawlessly. Her emotional component is crucial in connecting with both men and women. Her characters will remain vivid in our minds in years to come. She shows what the world is like through the eyes of everyday people. The regal face of Meryl Streep appears on the screen needlessly aware. Everyone sits back comfortably with their popcorn and Coke. As the lights dim, there is a low hush.
Leslie, Bennetts. Something About Meryl.” Editorial. Vanity Fair Jan. 2010: 62-123. Print.
Skow, John, and Elaine Dutka. “What Makes Meryl Magic.” Time Sept. 2010: 56. Print.