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Cracked Actor – Hooked To The Silver Screen With Bowie
John Tatlock , January 11th, 2016 10:59

Lifelong Bowie fan John Tatlock decides to get to the bottom of that age-old pub debate – can David Bowie actually act? – and unearths some priceless clips and details from an alternate but no less chameleonic career

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It’s easy to mock rock stars with acting aspirations. It’s a phenomenon with a bleak history, as anyone who has ever squirmed through Sting in Brimstone and Treacle or stared unbelievingly, fist in mouth, at Adam Ant in Jubilee can attest.

David Bowie is, in some ways, the star alumni of this hideous school. At this late stage, Bowie The Actor is known primarily for a throwaway cameo as himself in Zoolander and creepily chasing a teenaged Jennifer Connolly around an Escher maze in Labyrinth:

However, Bowie’s acting career actually pre-dates his rock star years, with positive press notices for his theatrical work dating back to 1967. And having clocked up some thirty-odd acting credits since in TV, cinema and theatre, you have to assume that there’s a reason he keeps getting hired.

So, Is Bowie Any Good At Acting? To make sure you don’t have to, The Quietus has slogged through a considerable chunk of Bowie’s thespian endeavours to find out.

Click on the image below to begin . . .

Originally published in June 2009


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Richard Augood
Jun 15, 2009 7:57pm

He's entertaining enough in "Into the Night" to excuse some of the other nonsense, cameo or not.

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Kat Duke
Feb 2, 2010 9:12pm

Strange to skip all mention of Il Mio West and Everybody Loves Sunshine. Was there a reason for these omissions?

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but good info nonetheless, thanks

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Jan 8, 2013 1:43pm

OT but loving all the Bowie coverage on tQ! Keep it coming!

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John Tatlock
Jan 8, 2013 10:52pm

In reply to clive:

Clive: oddly appropriate, I suppose. I did laugh myself, though.

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Nicholas Von Hoogenstraten
Jan 12, 2016 8:44am

FBI Agent Phillip Jeffries in "Twin Peaks - Fire Walk With Me", a cameo to remember.

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Jimi Fletcher
Jan 15, 2016 11:37am

'The dreadful Midnight Run'? Really? I'll say again - really? This is the first time I've ever heard anybody have a bad word to say about this wonderful film. I think it boasts one of De Niro's best ever performances, and the script is so good it gives everyone, even characters only present for one scene, a chance to shine. Definitely the best mismatched-buddy film ever, and so outright lovable I can only say once again - really?

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Jan 21, 2016 12:32pm

In reply to Jimi Fletcher:

Yeah, of all the dreadful films DeNiro has made of late, Midnight Run is a strange example, its a fantastic film, and is now regarded as one of the best films of the 80's.

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