Thursday, October 2, 2014

Michael Fassbender Makes a Lasting Impression

That Smile.
It is October now and I feel that I can officially write about and discuss things Oscar 2014. With Michael Fassbender in all likelihood not in the mix this year (in the remote chance that he’s even nominated for Best Actor in a Comedy or Musical for Frank at the Golden Globes) for any Oscar consideration this season, my blood pressure will thankfully remain low and I won’t feel the need to be on the defensive for performances and films I have a ‘fanship’ investment to win. That meaning I am not a hardcore fan of any particular person or film title that I’m staunchly rooting for this year. Sure, I have my eyes on a few favorites, but my support for them is nothing like supporting Michael Fassbender and his projects.
At the moment, Michael is in New Zealand filming ‘The Light Between Oceans’, and so far, he has fallen off the radar from the public eye on this undisclosed and protected set. So Fassinators are left to reminisce over his impressive film catalog and thousands of images posted all through the internet. I would like to take this moment to review what it is about the actor Michael Fassbender, which keeps my interest in him unwavering. I have addressed before that when someone takes on the responsibility to develop a creative endeavor in support of a celebrity, she or he needs to be serious about it and maintain an active level of interest in the celebrity’s career to continue regularly updating their fan websites of supportive information on the celebrity. I don’t believe in parroting the most mundane, outdated, and irrelevant tidbits about Michael, just to keep Fassinating Fassbender fresh, the readers would be bored. So I believe it’s ok to be a little quiet for a short while, if only to take a personal breather and to maintain a sense of integrity and selectivity for the blog.
If you are subscribed to the Michael Fassbender Google alerts, you would know that in the past six weeks or so, Google has been squeezing blood from a stone in their alerts with dull repetitive headlines related to Fassbender. Any for-profit “entertainment” website that has basic knowledge of SEO, website optimization, monetization, and keywords to lure readers to their sites, know how to use Michael Fassbender’s name in any context of their article to generate hits. Subsequently, a link to said website will pop up on the Google alert as supposedly relevant news on Michael. This is testament to his star power and name brand for marketers and pseudo-gossip writers to use him for click & bait titles and articles. Case in point, a Google search for Michael today brings up first page results for two articles that are pure bait click jobs. One August 2014 article by IndieWire, in record breaking shamelessness, deliberately creates a provocative title by misrepresenting a quote from Michael and misconstrues the context of those words to garner more hits to the website for that article.

Another article posted today, October 2nd, by Grantland, totally uses Michael Fassbender’s name in a tongue in cheek manner for the promotion of a film that he’s not even starring in. In the movie set to be released on Friday, Ben Affleck stars in David Fincher’s ‘Gone Girl’ (my ToZ review), and it’s reported that Ben has a nude scene where the viewer has a glimpse of his penis. So naturally since it’s so rare and apparently so daring for an A-list male actor to do frontal nudity, Grantland’s inclination is to make fun of Affleck’s purported nude scene and take creative license to pretend to interview Michael Fassbender’s penis in a satire article.

We get it, it’s funny when an actor is brave enough to do a nude scene, especially when he’s good looking, very well known, talented, won or been nominated for an Academy Award. We get it that Hollywood and entertainment writers do not really take men serious when they do full-frontal nude scenes. Women’s bodies are the ones to be exploited and fawned over to the point that it’s expected, demanded, and the norm. After all, they’re just, women, the second class human beings who are the objects of constant sexual desire by most straight men the world over, especially the ones in power. Men are above having to be nude in movies, so when they are, let’s have a laugh… and not nominate them for Oscars. But you know what; I also have a sense of humor while I analyze this industry double-standard. However silly the Grantland article is, they provided some interesting insight into the concerns studios have over their male actors. I’m pretty sure it’s not a far-fetched scenario to imagine the studio of a huge superhero film contacting the studio of the superhero actor’s other studio film, asking them to be mindful not to expose his assets too much; after all, the superhero actor does need to maintain a certain level of dignity. Ya know?

This is why I love how daring and honest Michael Fassbender is as an actor and a fellow human being. He does what he has to do if the job calls for it. He has mentioned many times in interviews that he’s looking for unique challenges in the roles he takes, and he wants to keep it real, and portray a character as honestly as possible with no personal biases judging the character. And those qualities in regards to his craft can also be found in how Michael lives his personal life: honest and true to himself. Michael Fassbender could date anyone in the world whom he felt would give his career the best PR boost, instead, he keeps it real, he is very private on that subject, and when he is seen hanging out with someone regularly, it’s not the generic stamped approved type of person. Michael Fassbender doesn’t give five fucks what people think about him, and that’s awesome. Actor Robert Pattison’s fan base blows Fassinators out of the water by sheer numbers and insane levels of stanning. So the craziness that is currently going on in his fan base demonstrates yet again that extremely disturbed “fans” exist in all fandoms and they suffer from the same debilitating anti-social, mean-spirited attitudes.

As of late, Michael Fassbender’s name often comes up as someone whose career and talent is reviewed with great respect, and inspires other actors to emulate. This blog is not a cutesy fan website for an actor just because he’s cute; the man has genuine talent, is very intelligent, and is a kind and compassionate person. When I had a job interview a few weeks back, I had to speak briefly about my online publishing and social media work. I mentioned Fassinating Fassbender and the interviewer asked me why did I select Michael and why did I choose blogging in support of him. I admitted that back in 2008, he was a fresh face and talent that excited me, and I wanted to use my talent of writing/blogging to show support for him and his career. Michael Fassbender has come a long way since then and she was impressed with my commitment. The fandom has lost a lot of fans, and has picked up a lot of fans as well. Most fans do not have the same level of commitment that I have, for instance, and I know other fans are even more enthusiastic over Michael than I am, but express it in different and non-public ways.

That Face.
I consider myself lucky to have jumped on the Fassy bandwagon back in early 2007 and it’s a thrill for me to share FF with likeminded fans. Michael Fassbender has the stuff to be an in demand actor for many, many years to come, and this blog will always be right here. We have a great reputation to those that matter, and we’re appreciated. I’m reminded of a comment made by a Cumberbitch at ToZ a couple weeks ago. Her delusions lead her to believe that her favorite actor is famous because of her being his fan. A fan doesn’t make a celebrity, the celebrity’s talent and charisma helps attract the development of a fan base. One thing has to exist first to establish validity for the existence of the other. I believe that both can’t exist without each other, hey, even a 10 year old car needs an enthusiastic salesperson.
If Michael Fassbender didn’t have one fan or one fan website, who would the movie studio market their film to? That’s why there are so many unknown actors not steadily working – they haven’t demonstrated a demand for them from the audience (aka Fans) to be hired and seen. That’s the rub. A great fan base helps demonstrate the interest people have in a celebrity, but the fans and the celebrity are on separate sides of the road with a bold white line between the two. So while Michael is hidden away in New Zealand working hard, one of his coolest fan communities is continuing to do our thing to support him by keeping his name and image active on the internet with information to help build a stronger fandom and help him continue to make a lasting impression in Hollywood.
-Article edited on 10/6/14 to add Gone Girl review link.


Hupsakeek said...

O my, what a lot of text to read for me...that means hard work:-)
This 'team's is the calm before the storm I guess. Funny to read about the alerts, because just before I read your post I stopped the Google alerts about Michael and Steve! It was like you describe in your post. No real news only name dropping for the benefits of a site. Disgusting blood suckers. But that is the world we live in.
And about's a shame that the media focuses yet again on some inches instead of the film. Giggling about it by the media is soooo immature and not professional at all. And just like Michael, Ben will think "WTF! Is that all you come up with?" Sitting in a live tv show...The camera's are rolling and the only thing you can do is smiling and hoping the 'interview' is almost over. Embarrassing 10 minutes when you supposed to talk about your film, but what turned out to be a talk about your private part for 9 minutes en 1 minute about your co-star. In between a 5 sec glimpse of the trailer and the next day the same shot all over again. That's stardom nowadays.
But they are lucky to have some fans :P

Hupsakeek said...

↑ team's must be means

The Ekairidium said...

Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for writing this article. I tend to be drawn to actors who do have an impressive body of work and whom I know takes their craft seriously and Fassy is such an admirable actor because of his focus, drive and passion for his career. Your article has wonderfully expressed why I became a fan of his in the first place and why I will continue to support him even if it's only in private. Your blog has been my most helpful source about him because you always take time to connect with fellow fans and to express your opinions and insights about his work life and films earnestly. Speaking of the latter, I do look forward to your podcasting next! I love listening to podcasts and general but I have never encountered a podcast devoted solely on an actor and his movies. I hope you'll keep us posted on any developments about that. Once again, thank you!

Simone said...

@Hupsakeek - I'm tempted to stop the Google alerts on Michael because they are completely nonsense as of late. But once in a while, one little tidbit stands out.

@Ekairidium - thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words. I really appreciate hearing from eloquent fans such as yourself about what they take from FF. and I like how you ID me as a fan, just like you, reaching out to fellow fans to provide a forum for them to keep up on Michael, and share commentary. I've been to far many websites where the admin doesn't engage with the readers, or they have a heavy admin hand over what can be discussed. I have only a few common sense rules, but other than that, I do love the interactions I have with fans here, and the interactions they have between each other, all because of Michael. Thanks!

ps. I hope to do another broadcast sometime this month. :)

The Ekairidium said...

I'm just very grateful for all the work you've put into this site. I enjoy it the most when you share your insights just like with this one and the other opinion piece about the hurtful rumors about Fassy beating his ex. That was such an enlightening article and very well-put in so many ways :) The interview with Fassy made me so giddy. I've re-read that like four times already. You had great questions and he answered them very well. I look forward to the podcast so much!!!!! I only have one friend who loves Fassy and she's quite the reticent type when it comes to discussions and I barely see her now. But I have watched three of my top fave films of Fassy with her last month and we plan to do another three movies again some time before Christmas :) Anyway, just sharing my personal Fassy experiences. This man is so incredible! I look forward to his new films. I have yet to watch Frank because I plan to watch it with that said friend of mine. But anyway, I always go to this site to keep up with updates on his new films. I'm especially excited for Assassin's Creed and The Light Between Oceans :) Also, of course, X-Men: Apocalypse, being a McFassy/Cherik shipper as well :p

Thanks for the response! <3

ButMadNNW said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ButMadNNW said...

*waves* I stumbled in here because I was out of sorts and doing a Google Images search for the FassyGrin™, because there's something about that man's grin that can make me smile no matter how I'm feeling. One image had some text attached that piqued my interest and, well, here I am. :) Just had a look round and subscribed by email.

You say a lot in this post that I agree with wholeheartedly. I was aware of Fassbender back in 2006ish when BBCA showed Hex, but circumstances, combined with his role choices not "Venn'ing" with my usual viewing choices, kept us apart (other than X-Men: First Class and my sexual disorders professor in grad school recommending Shame). Until X-Men: Days of Future Past, combined with my life being somewhat more settled, grabbed me by the mental lapels and said, "Okay, now PAY ATTENTION to this man!"

This is the first "obsession" I've been able to indulge and enjoy in about eight years, so I'm enjoying it fully and not apologizing. ;) And since I only have a couple of friends who'll put up with me about it (and just a tiny following on Tumblr, which I resisted joining for years - up until a friend pointed me to a Fassbender-dedicated blog there that I decided I had to follow), it's great to see sites like this - thoughtful, well-written, and not just drooling. For me, Fassbender is definitely a case of talent first, physicality later - his talent (especially for nonverbal acting), the way his mind works, how deeply he thinks about his characters, his personality in interviews, how down-to-earth he seems... All that is what interests me and really makes him attractive. :) So since May, when I walked out of my first (out of an eventual four) cinema viewing of DoFP and realized my mind was still half in that world - analyzing Erik's actions and words, mulling over little clues to his motivations, and recognizing the old familiar signs that told me I wasn't going to be shaking him any time soon - I've been catching up on everything I missed and rewatching those I didn't, fully acquainting myself with Fassbender's diverse career.

It's been very interesting and a definite challenge in places. I'm not quite done - I have some discs en route yet and a couple older roles I haven't hunted down. I've been pleasantly surprised to fall in love with many films I never would have watched if not for Fassbender - and not just because of his part in them. And I was amusedly annoyed to find myself tearing up in the cinema (ONE place in all of San Diego showed it for A WEEK and it took me 90 minutes on public transit to get to it while I was fighting off a cold, but SO worth it) and then over-analyzing Frank - he finally does a comedy and it makes me cry and over-think! (Thank goodness I have an unlocked DVD player; got the Region 2 disc from the UK because I couldn't wait for the US release.)

Sorry, I'm babbling! :) I really wanted to comment on The Ekairidium's comment about watching his films with a friend. A friend of mine in the UK got interested in Fassbender because my own interest was infectious. She and I schedule regular long-distance watch-alongs where we both cue up a film, get on chat, hit play at the same time, and then discuss/comment as we go. It's GREAT fun! Our last two were A Dangerous Method and Shame (her choice and I poked at her for the sex theme of the day). I think our next one will include 300 and...something.

Keep up the good work! I look forward to reading more of your entries and checking out that interview, but for now I need sleep.

Simone said...

@MadButNNW, LOL! thank you for your fun feedback. I love reading comments like yours from fans who happen upon FF for the first time and immediately feel a connection to the blog. I greatly appreciate your kind words, and I especially got a giggle about your evolution to a full-time Fassinator.

Some of the symptoms of Fassyitis is trying to convert other people and making it a mission to watch anything and everything Michael has appeared in. I still haven't seen everything yet, I'm in no rush cuz this is going to be a decades long fan relationship.

I tried to have a live chat with readers of the blog to watch a film at the same time, but only one other person participated. Most of our active posters here at FF are from overseas, so it's very, very difficult to make a live chat and movie event happen. But the concept of it is fun.

anyway, I think it's cool that you found FF by a google search for one of the TGiFassy images - Google works for some things it appears.

Welcome, enjoy, and keep posting. Thanks!

ButMadNNW said...

@Simone, Thanks for the welcome and glad I amused! I meant to come back and reply to you, but...Life. (Also meant to add a comment to the "film festival" post...)

I've been reading all your posts since I subscribed, though - always nice to see those pop up in my inbox, especially since they usually have a photo of FassyGrin™ and thus make me smile. :)

Keep up the great work!