A week or two before the current Elle hit newsstands, Jessica Alba's comments on screenplays caused a great uproar in Hollywood, particularly among sensitive screenwriter types.
"Good actors never use the script unless it's amazing writing," Alba said in her interview with the magazine. "All the good actors I've worked with, they all say whatever they want to say."
That set off a round of mockery, with screenwriters, movie buffs and critics joining together to lampoon Alba's acting "talents" and script choices, as well as to question how good these actors must be if they're not smart enough to stick to a script everyone else (producers, directors, etc.) already approve of.
John August, the scribe behind so-so Tim Burton fare like Big Fish and Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, struck back:
"Oh, Jessica. Where to start? Scripts aren't just the dialogue. Screenplays reflect the entire movie in written form, including those moments when you don't speak … Do you know the real reason we hold table readings in pre-production? So the actors will read the entire script at least once.
"Following your logic, you've never been in a movie with both good actors and amazing writing. That may be true, but it might hurt the feelings of David Wain, Robert Rodriguez, and Frank Miller." [Lime Life]
But Alba addressed many of these concerns in her interview with Elle:
"I know I haven’t been swimming in the deep end with some of the movies I’ve done. I wasn’t trying to. I knew what they were."
"I’d been so afraid of criticism ever since I was young. Every time I’d get a critique or some redirection, I’d always just take it very personally, but now I have no problem with it. It’s just a chance to try things a different way. To play more with a character. It also gives me a chance to have some input, to use my voice.” [Just Jared, via Elle]