Simply Streep is your premiere source on Meryl Streep's work on film, television and in the theatre - a career that has won her three Academy Awards and the praise to be one of the world's greatest working actresses. Created in 1999, we have built an extensive collection to discover Miss Streep's work through an archive of press articles, photos and video clips. Enjoy your stay.
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Action hero Harrison Ford was once the superstar staple of the summer blockbuster season, but now Oscar’s favorite leading lady, Meryl Streep, is making a habit out of cashing in on the busiest moviegoing period of the year with female-oriented counterprogramming. First, it was her fashionatrix in 2006’s The Devil Wears Prada. Then came last year’s disco diva in Mamma Mia! Combined ticket sales: a solid $268.8 million in the USA and Canada and $929.2 million worldwide. Next, Streep juggles pots, pans and pâté in what promises to be a deliciously rich portrait of Julia Child during the decade-long span when she evolved into America’s queen of French cuisine in Julie & Julia. Joining her is Amy Adams, her nun sidekick from Doubt, as blogger Julie Powell, who spent a year toiling over all 524 recipes in Child’s classic Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
Director/writer Nora Ephron, who did the screenplays for Streep’s Silkwood (1983) and Heartburn (1986), says the actress basically did an informal audition for her a couple of Junes ago when they bumped into each other at New York’s Shakespeare in the Park. “It was before I even started writing the script,” the filmmaker says. “She asked, ‘What are you doing?’ I said, ‘Blah, blah, Julie Powell, Julia Child, 524 recipes.’ She went into Julia as we were walking out of the theater. She did her for a full 10 seconds. I think she even said, ‘Bon appétit,’ ” the late chef’s famous sign-off from her PBS cooking show. “I thought, ‘OK, look no further.’ ” Once Prada opened, Ephron says, “I knew if I could get her, not only would she be the best person for it, but she would also force the studio to make the film. She was a movie star at age 57 or whatever she is.”
The role is more of a stretch than usual for Streep, who is 59. Not only does her half of the plot begin with Child at age 37 in 1949 as a student at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, but the chef also was a strapping 6-foot-2. How did Streep, who is 5-foot-6 or so, manage to create such a towering presence? “Meryl believed that in order to capture the essence of the character, you had to believe Julia Child is 6-foot-2,” Ephron says. “Actually, our ambitions were more modest. We made her 6 feet. We used a whole bunch of fabulous tricks. Everything we could think of. Ann Roth did amazing things with costumes.”
Naturally, the whiz at accents nailed the native Californian’s distinctive vocal inflections. A dark, matronly wig tops off the transformation. The performance, Ephron says, “is not an imitation, it’s more of a habitation.”