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Pondering the Pursuit of Phantom Passion


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Gerry's Phantom affected many of us very powerfully. It had been a long time since any film had affected me like that and none has affected me in the same way since. I don't know if there will ever be another like Phantom for me. It was the right time, the right circumstances, the right film catching me unawares.

Every performance Gerry has done has affected me positively, but none with quite as much of an impact as Phantom. Perhaps it is hoping for too much for it to happen again. But it was Gerry that caught me, and his intensity, not the Phantom. So, I have great hope that his intensity will catch me again, in the right film, at the right time, catching me unawares. I don't know when or what it might be. Some of my best film experiences were a total surprise. So, I have faith that Gerry will surprise me again.

jane

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This is a most interesting discussion and I really like all the various points of view that have

been addressed here. Some I totally agree with, and others I don't. Gerry's portrayal of the

Phantom is what brought me to fandom (phandom) but it is the man, himself, who really has

touched me in very deep and personal way. I am not the same person I was in Feb. 05 when

I finally made it to the theater to see POTO. I loved the movie, but for my first showing I spent

most of the time wondering WHO IS THAT ACTOR??? Of course, I came home, got on the internet,

and the rest is history.

I needed something in my life at 61 yrs and Gerry, and Gerry Fandom has truly filled up the void

that I had. I see him in a little different light than many--more like one of my "kids" (the joke is

he is my "phantom" son.) I had the good fortune to actually meet Gerry which made it way more

"real." Because of my "maternal" feelings when I see Gerry in a movie--I am watching Gerry

perform rather than being engrossed in the plot. The was the most prevelant in "300." The minute

I saw him on the screen the tears began to flow and they didn't stop until it was over!! He was

SO BEAUTIFUL, and I knew what he had done to get to this "place. " I had to see that movie 17 times on the big screen before I felt satisfied. I did that with PSILY as well. Since then, I have been able to contain myself and don't go to the theater nearly that many times. I will, if I "need" to, though.

My fandom will continue until the day I die. I love the man--warts and all--unconditionally. He has my support in everything he chooses to do--after all it's HIS life to live--we just get to come along for the ride. I do agree I would LOVE to see him do another romantic, dramatic role, but I see

the passion he puts into all of his roles. As far as a role such as The Phantom--I think that level

of passion may never be found, because we may only have THAT ONE amazing first experience.

Honestly, I am happy with whatever he does--if he's happy, I'm happy.

Anyway, there's my 2 cents.

Judy

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I'm a little at a loss for words, but I'll try to put my thoughts out there.

I really don't have the words to describe what Gerard Butler means to me. One thing is for sure - my feelings for the man go way, way beyond being a "fan". Allow me to try and explain...

I coasted along with a feeling of intrigue about this incredibly good looking, extremely talented actor for a long time after seeing him in Dracula 2000. Okay, nice on the eyes, definitely talented and sexy as all get-out. His portrayal of Dracula as Judas Iscariot was intriguing. Along came Atilla on USA Network. Oh yeah, definitely something there, but I was still just one of those many women who saw only the surface which encased what looked to be a blooming talent that would mature into the likes of Marlon Brando, Robert DeNiro, Anthony Hopkins. This guy really knew how to act - to make the characters he played really his own.

Timeline, Reign of Fire, Lara Croft...the talent was maturing.

Then came the Phantom. I had waited years for this play to become a movie and, no doubt about it - in my mind Gerry had some very, very BIG shoes to fill. I had seen the play on Broadway with Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman, and again on stage at the Kennedy Center in DC. The music touched my soul in a way nothing else ever had. Gerry's performance literally blew me away. I patted myself on the back. I was right. This actor had chops and he was definitely gonna be right up there on the very top tier with the best. Not the nearly great, but the absolute great ones. This man had the makings of Legend.

Then came 300. I saw the previews for this movie and I was not a happy camper - even if Gerry was playing the lead.

Leonidas was and is an icon for me - has been since my college days. What this man did in standing up for what he believed was right goes far beyond legend - but we all know that. The previews of the movie gave me the impression that this was going to be nothing less than a Hollywood disaster, or, if it was a hit, it would be one because a truly watershed moment in history that was the result of the actions of a true Hero was turned into nothing less than fodder for a video game. No, I was NOT a happy camper and I was NOT going to waste my money at the boxoffice to see my icon turned into an avatar. More's the fool me...

300 came to cable and I finally gave in and decided that okay, $3.99 to see the movie and find out what all the hoopla was about was not a bad deal. After all, if it turned out this movie was crap - it only cost me $3.99 plus tax rather than ten bucks and frustration. In the 24-hour rental period, I watched that movie no less than 10 times - and that is NOT an exaggeration. Gerry literally brought my hero to life. I cannot tell you what that performance meant to me. Not only would Leonidas have been proud, but this movie and Gerry's portrayal came at a time in my life that was devastating. His performance in 300 gave me the strength to get through what, up to that time, was the most horrendous series of events I had ever had to live through and deal with. I was involved in a lawsuit that was going to change my life in ways I could not imagine. If Leonidas could go to the wall, so to speak, then I could do no less than honor his memory and do the same. Gerry portrayed this man the way I had always imagined him and then some.

And then I decided to learn more. I was in for the ride of my life.

In The Jury, Gerry brought to the screen the hell faced by a recovering alcoholic. His portrayal was made genuine by the fact that he had lived that. I understood because I had lived it, too.

In Dear Frankie, his portrayal of the Stranger brought to life a man that most women can only dream about. I won the lottery and married one, so when I saw that movie, I already knew that such men actually existed.

In Shattered, he did Alfred Hitchcock proud.

And so on...

But 300 was my lifeline at a time when I thought things simply could not get worse for me. But they were going to.

Along comes Law Abiding Citizen. Clyde's encounter with the US legal system has become another lifeline for me. Gerry's portrayal of Clyde has become much the same for me as his portrayal of Leonidas. I have literally lived the betrayal by the US legal system that Clyde experienced in that movie and I totally understand his agony. Suspend disbelief? No way. The betrayal Clyde experienced changed him forever and not in a good way. I have lived that in a way I would not wish on anyone, but I totally get it. Gerard Butler brought that to the screen in ways I simply cannot find adequate words to express. I do know this. Clyde's life was changed forever when the legal system betrayed him. I understand that from experience and Gerry brought that to the screen - again.

I don't worship Gerry, but I'm not sure how to express what I do feel for him. I don't worship the doctor who saved my life when I was 18 years old. I don't worship my husband who has been one of the only things to have kept me from killing myself in the last two and a half years. Between my husband and Gerry's expression through his art of the hell I've lived through, I can honestly say that these two people have truly saved my life.

Am I a "fan"? No, it goes way beyond that. It isn't hero worship. It's something much, much deeper. I used to think that my husband was the only person in the world I would lay down my life for. Not so. I would take a bullet for him or for Gerard Butler any day of the week.

Without knowing all of the details, there are those out there who will classify me as a complete idiot. However, those who know definitely understand.

I hope with all my heart to be able to meet Gerry someday to be able to say "thank you". He won't understand the depth of those words and that's okay. I will. And if I never have the opportunity to tell him, that's okay, too.

Thanks for taking the time to read my ramblings.

Gerry, thank you for being a lifeline. I don't know what else to say.

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Catwoman...I'm sitting here with tears after reading your story. I'm so sorry you have had to go through these horrible things in your life. Your description of how Gerry has affected you is exactly the way I feel about him...he was a lifeline to me too in a very dark period of my life. He came into my life at exactly the right time that I needed. For me it goes far beyond and much deeper than just being a fan. Thank you for posting your story...

:wuv:

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Catwoman,

Thank you for sharing your story. There are others who understand your emotional connection to Gerry.

I myself first noticed Gerry in Reign of Fire, and Timeline. When I went to see POTO, at the theater, a jolt went through me, when he offered his hand to Emmy Rossum, and they journeyed down to the Phantom's lair. As she removed his mask, I was mesmerized by his beauty. By the time I arrived home, I was almost hyptnotized. I was going through a very tough period with our two sons, then 16 and 20.....going crazy with anguish and despair on a daily basis (they are doing OK now) Suddenly I was transported out of my problems, at least for a small portion of the day. There was a place that my mind could go everyday, to relax, take a rest from the relentless worry. I will always be thankful for that.

How can that experience ever be duplicated again? The ways in which a person makes that emotional connection are as many and diverse as there are people. I judge a story/movie by how it "stays with me" after I leave the theater. I have enjoyed all of Gerry's "charcters/roles".......some more so than others.

I am looking forward to Burns and Coriolanus! He does heroic so well! No matter what, Gerry will always be a "hero" to me.

:reddeath:

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Catwoman, thank you for sharing your brave story. Like Jane said, many of us get it, and I also feel that I am more than just a fan of Gerry's. He is my inspiration, my muse and much more. He truly is my hero, but not so much that I have him on an unreachable pedestal. I love his flaws and imperfections, and even his negative points. You have to love the whole package, right?

Gerry has saved many lives, changed many lives and continues to do so. This goes so beyond the characters he plays in the movies that does it really matter what he does in the future as far as the movies go? We're here for the long haul - forever. Gerry could (God forbid) stop making movies and we would still love him. He could (God forbid) become disabled or disfigured and we would still love him. It goes so far beyond what he does for a living or what he looks like. It's Gerry heart and soul that touches us.

Which is why I think so many relate to Phantom in that he showed us his heart and soul in that character. I think it's a one of a kind role, and I don't know that Gerry can put himself into another character quite so completely.

He truly is a special man, and he doesn't even realize. :wuv: Makes him even more genuine.

Lisa

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My feelings for Gerry go way beyond fandom too. I love this man and I always will. It's not just about his film roles and talent anymore...I passed that phase with the Phantom. It's the person I love. The man. Gerry Butler. Which is why I don't mind being disappointed when he does films I don't like. My admiration of him doesn't hinge on his film roles or talent.

This is also why I don't believe half the crap I hear about him, and why nasty gossip and lies about him no longer ruffle my feathers. I believe in him. Period.

So I can wait until he comes out with another film that rocks my world like POTO. And meanwhile, I'll see every film he does at least once.

Swannie

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I have enjoyed just reading the responses on this thread, before I felt inspired to respond and thanks, Susan, for starting it. But I think for me the whole idea is about what has Gerry's fandom evolved in to or what level of "passion" are we experiencing now? I believe all things change and evolve and move on in to something else. There's a constant forward momentum and ebb and flow in the universe and I believe Gerry's career and our involvement does that as well. I can't think of anything that stays the same unless it doesn't grow and change, and if it doesn't grow, it doesn't move forward and it eventually dies.

I could describe my fanship for Gerry as having been an evolution of feelings, emotions and growth both personally and spirtually. If I had not grown with this process, I would have felt stymied and lost interest. I have really enjoyed being a part of this, sharing my thoughts, listening to other's and making new friends. Hopefully some day I'll get to meet some of the wonderful people here in person.

I think with any relationship we sometimes look back on the "honeymoon" phase of it and wonder if we can ever recapture that initial excitement and flurry of feelings and emotion. It felt good, it was new and it had it's whole life ahead of it but like with most relationships, there are obstacles and bumps along the road. Well, the nature of things tells us, even if experience doesnt, that our relationship with anything or anyone will go through these phases, especially if it keeps growing and evolving, otherwise it just ceases and I think for those who did not grow along with Gerry and his career, perhaps, that could be why they got off or became disenchanted. Maybe they were just plain attracted to Gerry for all the superficial reasons that never sustain a relationship. Hard to say. Sometimes when people idolize or idealize, they get too disappointed when the object of their idealization does not live up to their standards. I think this is so very true with Gerry as he seems like one of the most "human" of anyone in his position that I know, but that's why I love him.

I'm one of the ones that hope the sequel "Love Never Dies" goes to film and if it does, Gerry and most of the original cast, will play in it again. Now that Gerry is more well known, I believe it stands to have a better showing this time around then the first and perhaps might make a whole lot of new phans, as well as create a whole new appreciation for the first one that it may not have had before.

I can understand, however, how some may not feel this way. Perhaps it is because they fear failure or they are more phantom "purists" in a sense, feeling the story needed to end exactly where it did.

In discussing what roles Gerry could possibly play in the future that would be to send him off in to the stratosphere of his profession, deserving of his talent, his presence, his charisma and that ever brilliant light of his, would have to be something along the lines of a continuing Phantom saga, a Burns or maybe a reprise of another classic tale such as Anthony and Cleopatra, as Richard Burton and Liz Taylor portrayed. It's a story of romance and love but it is also a story of conflict, passion, and two very strong willed people, leaders connecting with their mutual desire to rule their worlds. That seems to be so in keeping with Gerry's attitude towards his own idea of his ideal relationship and you know how he likes to play roles that he can identify with.

Maybe that's the reason Gerry seems to fit so well in some roles and in others more lack luster and that may be because the ones he portrays where he is the leading character, strong, colorful and passionate, as in Phantom, 300, Attila, etc., these roles get to show his range of acting more as the dynamic figure, the leader, the impassioned lover, so then supporting roles such as One, Two for example even though he was excellent even there, or the dying husband, he was a more sideline character. I just don't see Gerry as a sidekick, supporting actor or any one's "wing man", so to speak. He's a larger than life character and he shines brighter when he plays those kinds of roles where he can flex his acting muscles not just his biceps even though those are quite nice! :cunning:

The rom coms are fun and the tear jerker stories like Dear Frankie and PSILY are wonderful, but my vision of Gerry as an actor is in those roles where he's the hero, the tragic and desparate love ravished figure, the man that goes down for the love of his life or his country. I'd love to see him play a Mark Anthony, or a Heathcliff, Robert Burns and I look forward to his portrayal of Tullus Aufidius. Even though this part seems to be a supporting role, it also seems that he mayl wind up being the hero in the end.

Even though I enjoy him in modern roles, Gerry for me has that classic presence about him, he has a graceful and almost antiquity of handsomeness, if that's an adequate description. I could see Gerry's face in a sculpture or painting of an ancient warrior, leader or even romantic artisan (Burns).

In short I guess if I were describing my personal evolution of fanship, I'd say I'm right were I should be. I've gone through a myriad of feelings and emotions during this time since August of 2008 to present. I've been excited and inspired, passionately motivated, physically and emotionally ignited, challenged with the realities of human nature and differences between true love and admiration and that of idol worship and their sometimes ill defined, blurred lines and now I'm at a place where unless this guy does something that would go so against the grain of my own value system, I will hold him dear and sacred in my heart and soul from now on. When I say "true love" allow me to qualify that by saying that any type of love, not just that of a romantic nature, is only considered "true" if it stands the test of time.

I wish that the industry would get away from making movies and telling stories that may appeal to a target audience that comprises of the ones that are most apt to be parted with the money and come back to making more art and entertainment for everyone, like the Hollywood of olden days. I hope Gerry has an opportunity to do that with the freedom his own production company will afford him. I think he's building that company up right now in order to be able to accomplish some of the more elaborate and extravagant films that I hope he wants to do.

I look forward to the future and seeing what comes next and I hope that many more will join in. They don't have to become a member of any fan sites or communities, but I hope they take the opportunity to visit and read what we have to say at times. We are all people of deep, emotional expression here. We are artistic, each in our own right and we get how important that is.

I'd like to see a day when Gerry is accepting his award, best actor or even a lifetime achievement, with an introduction of a montage of his movies maybe starting with Phantom all the way up to THAT one role or that movie that we all hope for, for him, that Susan eludes to, that brings him that ultimate recognition and will bring in to his heart, as well as his devoted fans, that feeling of satsifaction and the confidence that he is finally "there". I hope he'll be thinking about us when he accepts it because most of us will be sitting right there along with him, saying, "I told you so."

Delene

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I am so offended right now. I have been made to feel like some kind of mindless follower worshiping at the alter of Phantom of the Opera! And I am somehow less of a Gerry fan because of it. Anyone who has spent anytime with me, knows how devoted I am to both Gerry and Erik. The two things are totally different, and I am not a total twit. I am a well balanced adult who happens to be both a Phantom fan and a Gerry fan.

Deb, You are not alone. I am an Erik and a Gerry fan too. Though I feel you might be a bigger one of both in heart not girth I win that battle :lalala: . I am catching up. Just give me time. :hehe::donjuan:

Love,

Tracy

:hug:

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Its really no suprise that I am stubborn, I am a very stubborn person. I am also a person whom refuses to compromise my integrity, which is rooted from me being so stubborn. There are times where I have not agreed on some of the things said since I joined this site over three years ago, I have my reasons. However, I am in absolute agreement that Gerry is a one of a kind talent and my feelings for him go beyond a mere fan.

Most of you do not know much about me as I`m a very private person. For example, really no-one here knows that I happen to have a neuromuscular disease, called Muscular Dystrophy, I`ve had it since birth and having it has really taken its toll on me in several levels throughout my 21 years on this earth. Its affected my ability to have friendships, to be percieved as "normal", to feel "normal". I am saying this, not for sympathy because I gave up a long time ago on people trying to understand what it feels like. I am explaining myself because I know what its like to force yourself into the darkness for an entire lifetime.And this, is by no means easy to talk about, its not at all. I became a Phantom of the Opera fan at age 9, long before I knew of Gerry or became a Gerry fan.

Phantom of the Opera has been my all time favorite musical for nearly 13 years, I love it like I would love a child...its my heart, its my soul. The Phantom is the only character whom I`ve ever looked at and instantly saw myself. I understood his lonliness, his anger and bitterness toward the world, his longing for an understanding that would never come. I loved the Phantom, I love him still. Most people I know don`t even try to understand what they refer to as an "obsession" with this musical. I have never percieved it as that, but more as a passionate love based on mutual respect that has lasted near a lifetime.

I am a Gerry fan too, I can be both....but if I had to choose between the two, I`m not sure whom I would pick.

~Sarah

Edited by AngelofMusic
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POTO has what I think of as a cult following. The emotions that movie inspired in so many fans is impossible to maintain, and a fandom cannot survive on that one movie alone ether.

3. idolization of somebody or something: extreme or excessive admiration for a person, philosophy of life, or activity (often used before a noun)

"a cult following"

Encarta ® World English Dictionary © & (P) 1998-2004 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

I think this statement, with all due respect, is a bit of a contradiction. Fans could be considered "cultish" in their own way. Many have called Gerry's fanbase a "cult following" and it has maintained. The word, "cult" sort of gets a dark stigma attached to it that it really doesn't deserve.

There are so many followers, if you will, of POTO and I am a fan too, that have written stories off the original, continue their desire and passion for Erik and the story by reading these, lapping them up like the nectar of the gods! I would say that pretty much is a maintaining of emotions and I think it is a wonderful thing to see those who can identify with the character and get a sense of belonging and validation from the character of the Phantom.

I am a fanatic about "Gone With The Wind". I have read the book so many times, seen the movie, I hated the sequel which I had so looked forward and it just didn't depict the characters the way it should have. With POTO sequel, the writer of the first musical will be able to maintain the characters through the next one so that is why I feel it will be a success.

A story that arouses his emotions and passions may be on his docket already or it may be a few years down the road. And it might not be anything like Phantom, and it may take his career far from that moment when many first knew him.

This is true, but many stories are like Phantom. I saw the phantom's character to some degree in Clyde. Although he evolved in to that character out of circumstances, Clyde was like the phantom in that he felt like he didn't matter, his world was shattered, he went around like a "ghost" causing havoc, and he decided to strike out against those he felt were his enemies, kill to make his point and intimidate, just like Erik did. Even the ending was similar with the fire raging around him. When I first saw the tunnel leading to his cell from the warehouse, the Phantom's lair came to mind! So similar were these characters that I think Gerry still identifies himself with a tragic figure to a degree, an outsider or misfit and those of us who have maybe felt that way in our own lives surely identify with that and that is why we embrace it so much.

As much as I like Phantom, if I had seen in it in 2003 it would not have made me a fan. 300 would not have made me a fan. It was PS I Love You that got to me. Then I was able to go back and appreciate how wonderful Gerry was in both Phantom and 300. Sometimes it takes awhile to truly appreciate a good actor’s work

You are absolutely right, Rubee! It does take a while sometimes and I'm glad I discovered Gerry! We all have our favorites and the one that brought us here in the first place and that really makes us all pretty much a like on a very basic level, doesn't it?

Hugs,

Delene

Edited by GBPhanatic
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I saw POTO on tv last January and became a fan especially because of the PONR scene. Afterwards I realized that I had already noticed Gerard in "The Jury".

Although Gerard has done some movies, which I did not like very much, I was still able to admire his excellent performances in those movies. I saw TUT a couple of times and really loved also the movie. It is unfortunately still a long wait to get it as a DVD from Amazon UK (available in February).

This moment I´m waiting for LAC to arrive in Finland and especially I have great hopes about Coriolanus. The latter sounds a wonderful role for him. I hope that after his all birthday celebrations and Christmas & New Year celebrations he will take time to start a diet a couple of months before the filming starts and do a lot of resting, to look his very best in that movie....

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Some how I feel those of us who are POTO fans are credited as only loving POTO and its passion. The only way a sequel could work for POTO would be with authenticity and continuity from the original movie.

I have mentioned I think "Burns" can be a vessel of firey passion played by Gerry and what he brings from deep inside him and his Celtic Soul. I'm sure there are many other parts he could play. Comedy doesn't bring passion like drama can.

Clyde was another passion we may not feel comfortable speaking about. Thank Heaven, we all have a moral compass to keep our passions under control. Gerry was awesome!

300 also has passion. Gerry was touched by the King. He found the "Lion" within him. That movie reached many new fans. It was crazy! How many new Gerry sites were started by that part? I am hopeful there will be more characters in Gerry's future that will refuel the fires that be and start a new frenzy. Gerry has the power and talent to do that. When Gerry reaches into his character's heart, we feel it. Keep doing that Gerry...

Hopeful "'til to the end!"

Sally

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Deb, I'm sorry about whatever or whoever it was that made you feel so angry, and I hope that it was completely unintentional. I for one know just how much of a GERRY fan you are as well as being a passionate fan of POTO. We aren't required to choose, they aren't mutually exclusive. I was a fan of the show for about 15 years before the movie was made, and I don't feel that being a fan of POTO in all its forms makes me less of a Gerry fan - it was HIS Phantom that brought me here, that got me fascinated with the actor behind the mask, but it was the man himself who has kept me around almost 5 years now.

I love hearing how other Gerry characters are the ones that brought out the passion in other fans. Whether it is Leonidas, or Clyde, or Johnnie Donne, or the Stranger. I am glad to hear that Clyde is doing that for some and that may bring a new wave of people who have to go home from the cinema and Google "that guy" to find out more!

After spending a couple of weeks in Scotland and hearing again about the country's connection with its history I can think of any number of amazing, heroic and romantic characters that Gerry might one day bring to life. I could see him playing Robert the Bruce, or one of the Highland chieftains who was a loyal Jacobite ultimately lost on the battlefield at Culloden. Since I'm rather partial to hearing that Scottish burr in as much of its natural glory as possible, I can seen so many characters in his country's history (in addition to Burns) that could be the center of an amazing film if the script was equally amazing. Just a bit more pondering on my part, I know and fully accept that Gerry is driving his own career and I'm just a passenger on the bus, along for the ride and enjoying the scenery at each new film he gives us.

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Words do get in the way sometimes. "Cult film" is a very common term when talking about films. It just means a film that despite lack of critical approval or box office success maintains a loyal following of fans who champion it through time. Sometimes these 'cult films' ultimately gain critical approval and a wider audience. It's not a negative term at all. To refer to POTO as a 'cult film' simply means it has a small but loyal audience that refuses to abandon it to obscurity. There are many such films which is a good thing.

And there are all kinds of Gerry-fans. Some fans are only interested in Phantom, no other performance interests them, some love Phantom as well as other films, some dislike or ignore Phantom altogether, some would follow Gerry if he made no films at all. :D There is no good or bad, plus or minus to any of it. A fan who only loves his action films but hates his rom-coms is no better or worse than one who only finds value in Dear Frankie and dislikes LAC. Everybody is different with varying interests and degrees of interest.

I'm nutz about him and always will be even when he retreats to The Highlands to keep sheep. I'll learn to card wool and weave kilts. You just do whatever works for you. :D

jane

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I learned long ago to just stay away from the negative places. If I read any of that stuff and let it get to me then I've given it power, so for me it just doesn't exist - out of sight out of mind. But you might be right about some of the psychology behind it - for those fans who aren't able to deal with the object of their affection (obsession) in a real-world sort of way, and suddenly realize that the real person behind it isn't the romanticized version of Gerry they've had in their head, or they are finally faced with the reality that he will never be personally connected to them, the affection/obsession may turn to disillusionment which may in turn (for some) become anger or rage which they feel free to express in the same way they expressed their undying love before. The ones that are hardest for me to understand are those who continue to post praises in one forum and then go elsewhere to bash the living daylights out of him. That seems rather ... crazy.

It's also very true that for those of us who have already experienced that "moment" of discovery - whether it be from Phantom or Leonidas or any other character - will never experience the likes of that again. What is great fun is reading the stories of other fans who came into it after me and finding out what the spark was for them, and then wondering what new character will do that for possible swarms of new fans in the future.

One thing about Gerry's career that seems quite rare if not totally unique to him is how many truly iconic characters he has embodied on the screen - and almost from the very start. He was Attila, Dracula, Phantom, Beowulf, Leonidas... I imagine that his more contemporary and humorous roles came as a relief - a chance to be "a regular guy" to some extent, even a chance to show he could be funny and goofy and not just stoic and heroic. I don't think any actor could or should confine himself to just the iconic roles, and it's quite amazing that Gerry has done so many, so quickly. He has played icons who came from history or legend - maybe the next iconic role (if not Burns) will involve an entirely new and innovative character, one he creates from scratch in a way. I'll still be around for it, whatever, whoever and whenever it may be.

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He has played icons who came from history or legend - maybe the next iconic role (if not Burns) will involve an entirely new and innovative character, one he creates from scratch in a way. I'll still be around for it, whatever, whoever and whenever it may be.

Me too Susan! We'll go together! (Like Sally and I need another excuse for a road trip :lalala: )

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*guest*, I just want to say that I LOVED your post. Thank you for sharing your heart with us and for voicing some issues and concepts that I'm sure many of us has given thought to.

I love the image of Gerry as a solar flare!

Swannie

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Let me be clear, a movie with a cult following is a good thing, and in no way is meant to be demeaning to fans who love that particular movie. Watch Turner Classic Movies and you will find dozen of cult movies that are considered classics and an essential part of film history. Devoted cults of movie fans have rescued many movies from failure and oblivion and have caused those movies to be re-evaluated as classics. Movies like Night of the Hunter, A Christmas Story, The Rocky Horror Show, Bringing Up Baby, Scarface (De Palma version), Out of the Past, and Freaks are a few that are now considered classics. Many of them were box office or critical failures. If silent film comic Buster Keaton had not become a cult figure in the 1950’s his work as an actor and director would have fallen into obscurity. If the 1925 version of Phantom of the Opera did not acquire a cult following then Lon Chaney’s work would not be appreciated today. So if the 2003 film version of Phantom has a cult following that might give the sequel a fighting chance to make it on the screen and insure Gerry gets cast. That’s what a cult following can do!

Gerry would have been an ideal actor for the golden age of film. He could swash his buckle with the best of them. He would have been ideal in a screwball comedy or a dramatic love story. And the studios had a vested interest in having an actor like Gerry play in all kinds of movies.

These days what remains of the studio system is only interested in pitching to certain demographics. This is challenging for actors. I hope Burns gets financing. I would love to see Gerry in a movie like North by Northwest, or The English Patient. I don’t want him trapped as an action hero. I don’t want him to be forced to consider a movie like Gamer again (although to be fair it did lead to The Ugly Truth.) I want him above all to work and getting the same sort A list opportunities that Clooney, Damon & Pitt are getting. And if one those roles arouses his passion and our passion that’s icing on the cake!

(cross post with Jeb!)

Edited by Rubee815
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