Just watched Poltergeist late last night. It's been a while since I've seen it but I can remember how this movie freaked me out when I was six. I think the line "They're here" ranks right up there with The Fly's "Be afraid, be very afraid" as perhaps the top two lines to come out of the 80s horror scene IMO. My reason for watching the film again came from a discussion I had with a friend of mine. Heather O'Rourke.
I wonder how her career might have turned out had she not died prematurely at the young age of 12. She was mature beyond her age and I speculated whether or not she could have made a successful transition to an adult actor. If you think about it, they're not that many child actors who achieve the same level of success as adults as they did in their childhood years. Who was the last really successful one? Probably Jodie Foster. Drew Barrymore made a nice comeback after a battle with drugs and alcohol. Even fewer have gone on to win an Oscar. Again, Jodie Foster was probably the last. Could Heather O'Rourke have done the same? Hard to tell since her only real claim to fame was the Poltergeist trilogy. However, based on that, I do think she would've been a successful adult actor. Steven Spielberg certainly seemed to think so. Come to think of it, I really have yet to see a child actor or actress who has that ability until now.
I also recently watched Man on Fire. I think you've probably guessed where I'm going with this. Dakota Fanning. She's very much like Heather O'Rourke was in terms of her maturity and screen presence. Only time will tell how her career winds up. I think she goes one of two ways. She's another Jodie Foster or another Linda Blair. Right now if I had to choose, I'd take the former. Then of course there's Haley Joel Osment who really has not done anything of note since his Oscar nomination in The Sixth Sense.
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