In 1985, I went to the movies with some fellow camp counselors to see a new western, Silverado. Halfway through the movie, I dropped my popcorn and shouted, "Hey, I know him!" as local actor and friend of the family Richard Jenkins appeared ever so briefly as Kelly, corrupt saloon manager and recipient of a bullet from the barrel of Brian Dennehy's gun.
Tonight, we sat and cheered him on as he was lauded on the Critics Choice Awards as one of America's finest character actors and a best actor nominee (for his heartwrenching performance in "The Visitor" -- review coming soon after I watch it for the third or fourth time) alongside Brad Pitt, Clint Eastwood, Sean Penn, Mickey Rourke, and Frank Langella.
It was definitely an odd experience to see a guy I've known since I was 9 or 10, who I grew up watching act here in Providence at Trinity Rep and TV in shows like "Miami Vice" and "Spenser: For Hire" and "Six Feet Under" along with a succession of ever-more prominent film roles, and who attended my wedding sitting there at a table in Hollywood alongside his wife, Sharon, wondering if his name was going to be called.
Congratulations, Dick! All of us here in Rhode Island are thrilled for and proud of you and keeping our fingers crossed both for your nomination in the Spirit Awards as well as hoping to see your name among the nominees for an Oscar!