July 20, 2006
Celebrity Giamatti Watch: Ethan Embry
I know it seems like a long time ago that anyone really cared what Ethan Embry was doing, and maybe you think that you never cared. But, without knowing it, you probably did. There was that fleeting moment in 1998 where people swooned for his lovesick-geek turn in Can't Hardly Wait, and women and gay boys alike developed sweetly nagging crushes on the gangly saucer-eyed kid with a slight lisp; then he snagged a TV pilot, and he was as close to a household name as he ever got.
But then that pilot turned into Freakylinks, and ... well, you know how that went; now you not only don't care about him, but you didn't remember why he was "famous" until I mentioned it just there.
Still, he's back out and about again. For whatever reason. And it's intriguing. Because take a look at Ethan Embry a few years ago:
More Luke Perry than Luke Wilson, right?
Well, if you'd told this kid that in 2006 he would have puffed up and turned into Paul Giamatti, I suspect he'd have taken off the stupid fedora he always seemed to be wearing and punched you right in the face with a girlish yawp.
For here he is now:
Okay, just kidding, that is Paul Giamatti. But the resemblance between Giamatti -- Hollywood's resident shlub artist -- and present-day Embry is uncanny.
Right? I can't imagine this is where Embry intended to go -- no disrespect to Paul Giamatti, who is a talented actor even if you find the bitter sad-sacks he plays to be intolerably self-pitying, but I don't think that many people are kept awake at night wondering, "How can I be more scrubbly? How can my voice reverberate with nasal contempt for myself and for life? HOW? THERE MUST BE A WAY!" And I should also point out that in Hollywood, at the moment, there appears to be room for only one Paul Giamatti.
So, Ethan, you might want to rethink a little.