Jodie Foster: Genius from Birth – Response due April 4 (6pm)

jodie_foster2Jodie Foster grew up in the entertainment business getting her first taste of stardom at 3 years old. TV commercials, magazine ads, television shows and Oscar-winning films have taken this child prodigy throughout roles of time, space, history and into the arms of serial killers. The Ivy League scholar, Foster has acted, directed and produced films for audiences of all types, but she’s drawn to films that speak truth and ask questions of life.

Check out more about the multi-Oscar winner and Lifetime Achievement in Film honoree Jodie Foster here. You should also read this interview with Foster from Interview Magazine (Feb., 2016).

In this interview from 2005, Foster explores being birthed into the entertainment biz, life in the spotlight, women in the film industry, and what true success looks like.

After reading the biography (reading the magazine interview), and watching the interview with Foster, address two of the following questions by April 4 (6pm):150217123236-62-oscar-best-actress-restricted-super-169

  1. What do you feel has been Foster’s secret to success? Why?
  2. What do you find most fascinating about this person who has worked her whole life in the business (other than the fact the she’s worked her whole life in the film business)?
  3. What life lesson (or lessons) have you gained from exploring her life story?
  4. What do you feel has been the most significant experience (or role) for Foster? Jodie-Foster-Net-Worth1Why?
  5. Compare Foster with another filmmaker we’ve explored and share similarities.
  6. Based on her interviews, do you feel that Foster is more comfortable behind or in front of the camera these days? Explain.
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18 thoughts on “Jodie Foster: Genius from Birth – Response due April 4 (6pm)

  1. Mallory Moore

    1. What do you feel has been Foster’s secret to success? Why?
    I think that one of her secrets to success has been humility. In the interview, she talked about the movies she made as a child and how the adults on set became like her family. She would listen to them and learn from them, and it seems like she was willing to take their advice and listen to their correction. It might have been really easy for a child star to get really sassy and vain, but it seems like Foster just stayed humble and listened to the advice that adults gave her. I think that humility also allowed her to step away from acting at times and try other things like a formal education and directing.

    5. Compare Foster with another filmmaker we’ve explored and share similarities.
    Reading about Jodie Foster reminded me a little bit of Meryl Streep. Streep did not start as young as Foster and she did not pursue directing, and she has also had a lot more acting roles later in life. But both actresses have been in the business a long time and have stayed very humble and kind. They don’t come off as pompous or arrogant in their interviews. It’s almost like they are in a class above the typical “movie star.” They take their jobs very seriously and are drawn to acting not for glamour, but to explore stories and characters. Streep liked to find a deep emotional connection to the characters she plays, and that seems similar to Foster’s attraction to words and stories.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Haley Walker
    *Jodie Foster*

    What life lesson (or lessons) have you gained from exploring her life story?
    After the shocking experience Jodie Foster had during the time of Reagan’s assassination, she was shaken that a man had killed the president in an effort to impress her. She held her head high though and didn’t let the bad press and the negative comments get to her. I think that’s a lesson we all could learn from: never let anyone get you down.

    Based on her interviews, do you feel that Foster is more comfortable behind or in front of the camera these days? Explain.

    I think that Foster is more comfortable behind screen now and enjoys filmmaking, perhaps more than she did acting. She said in an interview that “Acting for me, is exhausting. I’m always so energized by directing. It’s more intense to direct. I can pop in and express myself and then pop out again. It’s a huge passion for me.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. 1. What do you feel has been Foster’s secret to success? Why?

    I think that her modesty. In the interview, she exclaims how as a child she became family with the adults on set, and learned a lot from them. She would listen and learn as they taught her on what an actress should do to be successful and gave her good advice. And as a result, unlike some child actors, Jodie Foster used this advice to the best of her being and became successful.

    3. What life lesson (or lessons) have you gained from exploring her life story?

    I think that the loife lesson to which I have learned from this is that at first your passion may not start out as easy as you want it to be, but with a little patience and hard work you can become great in anything like Jodie Foster has with acting.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Kate Lamar:
    1. Foster stated, ” I do not prefer to act in the film i am directing. As an actor, you do learn how to turn things on and off quickly and kind of compartmentalize”. With her not being in films that she is directing, she wants to mainly focus on everybody else and the whole scene of the movie, and not just the part of a character. From reading this quote, I think it is a way of turning things off that you normally would do on a daily basis, and put on your “poker face”. With actors, you have to sometimes portray somebody else completely different than yourself.
    3. One life lesson that I took out of this is she talked about all the planning that goes into being an actor and in one second it could be taken away from you. There are so many different gigs and auditions, that so many people go to. Also, don’t spend all your energy on everything, get specific on what career or brand you want to do.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What do you find most fascinating about this person who has worked her whole life in the business (other than the fact the she’s worked her whole life in the film business)?
    When reading about Jodie Foster I think its so interesting to read about her life and how she started in film from such a young age and was basically a child genius as well. I find the fact that she enjoys directing more and has called acting “exhausting.” This really shocked me because she’s been acting from such a small age but when you really take a look at Jodie Foster she wants to explore issues that question different aspects of life. By directing instead of acting she gets to control the direction of the film when she acting someone else is basically giving her the direction.

    What do you feel has been Foster’s secret to success? Why?
    The secret to her success has to do with the wide range of films she decides to take on. She will take on indie film or she will take on a huge blockbuster and it seems like she really has a good self-understanding of herself and that’s a huge part of her success. She knows exactly what role she wants to take on (or direct) and she excels in it. The fact that she has been doing it since she was a baby also is used to her advantage as well. Acting/directing is basically a second language to her and its how she expresses her feelings towards reflecting truth in these different roles.
    -Kacy O’Connor

    Liked by 1 person

  6. 1. She is fully focused on what she is doing and gives it her all. Even when she is a director and actor in a film, she knows when to flip the hats and focus on what she needs to focus on. Most people want to be a multi-tasker now and not worry about what is in front of them. So I feel her secret is that she is able to tone everything out and stay zoned in on her project.

    3. I feel a life lesson is she knows when to take a break from it all. She said that she does get burned out and knows when to step back but she always goes back into the movie life. This is something that stood out to me because I don’t want to keep doing something over and over and then over do it and no longer love what I am doing.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What do you feel has been Foster’s secret to success? Why?
    -I think Foster has been so successful because she is able to play so many roles. There are a lot of actors who stick to certian genres or a style of acting and I think that she has been able to to remain successful is because her range of films she can act in is so wide. Also another reason I think she is so successful is because not only did she start at a young age but it seems like she never went through that stage where her head got big or she thought she knew everything. After reading and watching her interviews, she says she listened, looked up, and respected her elders all throughout her acting career.

    Based on her interviews, do you feel that Foster is more comfortable behind or in front of the camera these days? Explain.
    -Surprisingly, she seems more comfortable behind the camera. I found this very shocking only becuase of how long her career as an actress has lasted and the small amount of movies she has directed. But I can understand why she would want to direct, once you have a strong passion for something you would want to have control versus acting and maybe not agreeing with the director but, still having to follow his direction because he is in charge.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Rachel Gann

    2. I am very impressed that even though she was already in the business of films that she still decieded to go to Yale. I don’t think alot of people would have chosen to continue to go to school if they were already successful or on the road to success. I think it shows the drive Foster has and the expectations that she holds herself to. She didn’t settle for just being an actress she wanted to get an education too.

    6. In my opinion she seems to be more comfortable behind the camera rather than on camera. I think it’s because of how creative she is and how much she has to say. When you’re acting the director normally does take into consideration your ideas and thoughts but ultimately they get the final say in what is going to happen. Foster it seems like to be creative and likes to direct more than take directions. She seems to be more inspired by directing than acting. I think that’s because acting is alot of taking orders, its alot of “could we try this?” and “I have an idea what if we try this?” where as directing is “lets try this” and “lets see how this looks”. Directing is a better way to let out your vision, what you see happening in your head and it seems that as Foster has grown up shes become more creative and more of a take control kind of person.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Sthefany Flores

    2. I find it fascinating that she came to view her characters not just as mere entities but as their roles in the literature of the film. Sometimes you can really tell when an actor is only thinking of their character as what they are but Foster sees the bigger picture. She sees them as they bring about the plot of the story and what they represent and what they will inspire. She understands that there is so much more than just lines to a character and that is what makes her roles excellent.
    3. I think that the two big things I learned from her are: don’t be afraid to try something new and that you never stop learning. Because she was raised in film, it became the only thing she knew but she still tried to do theatre and even got into directing. She diversified herself although she was mostly known as an actress when she was young and as a result she gained a lot of perspective. I find it really telling that she said that when she was young she felt best when she was around her big “family”. Where she was taught how to do crazy things and even to whittle. It is very clear that this background has had a very big impact on her life.

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