REWIND: From The Australian, October 27, 2011
ACTRESS Noni Hazlehurst has mounted a vigorous defence of her profession, saying actors are hardworking and accomplished artists who shouldn’t be confused with mere celebrities. The stage, film and television actress says popular culture doesn’t respect serious acting and denigrates those such as Cate Blanchett who dare to express an opinion.
‘‘ There are very few opportunities for highquality performing artists to show what they can do on television,’’ she says. ‘‘ The majority of entertainers who get exposure in prime time are wannabes competing in talent shows. Cheap local content.’’
Hazlehurst — whose television work has included City Homicide and Play School — was speaking yesterday at a breakfast organised by arts interest group Currency House.
The National Cultural Policy discussion paper released by the federal government says it promises a more expressive and confident citizenry, but Hazlehurst fears a culture dominated by aggressive and abusive voices: ‘‘ junk culture’’.
She repeats the defence she mounted on behalf of Blanchett on ABC1’s Q & A after Blanchett was ‘‘ villified’’ for her involvement in an advertisement in favour of action on climate change.
‘‘ She was described in one media outlet as ‘ just an actor’,’’ Hazlehurst says. ‘‘ I can’t remember who wrote that, but I suspect it was just a columnist.’’