Angela Bassett: Boarding The ER Ship To Troubletown

*Inspired by Shirley MacLaine's assertion that the best parts for actresses fall into one of the above categories.

This week in Hollywood casting announcements: plenty of potential victimization for Tinseltown's bold-faced beauties. (Victim characters, of course, are easy to spot: They're usually described as "troubled" or have a "tortured past," have "suffered" a "crisis," are "surviving" and "learning to move on" from their rape/brutal attack/illness...take your pick!) After the jump, take a look at the newest roles for Angela Bassett, Nicole Kidman, and America Ferrera and see how they stack up on the actress-cliche scale.



Angela Bassett, ER: Bassett will be playing a troubled doctor who comes back to Chicago after doing tsunami relief in Indonesia. Her arrival promises to "shake County General's ER to the core." Verdict: Well "troubled" usually translates to "victim," although a victim usually doesn't shake a television series to it's "core." She might be playing a shrew as well.

Nicole Kidman, Dusty Springfield Biopic: Novelist Michael Cunningham (The Hours) has revealed that Kidman will star in the upcoming Dusty Springfield biopic he's writing. The film will explore Springfield's tortured, drugged, and depressed years, as well as her successes. Verdict: No one does victims quite like Cunningham, and Springfield's biography is not lacking in victimized and depressed elements.

America Ferrera, An Invisible Sign of My Own: Ferrera will star in this coming-of-age film about a 20-year-old loner who turns to math for salvation when her father becomes ill. [Uh, isn't that a play called 'Proof'? -Ed.] When the character becomes an adult, she must teach math to students using her crisis as inspiration. BO-RING. Verdict: All of the victim keywords are here: "crisis" "salvation" and "ill father," but the character might overcome her own victimization in the end, so we will have to see how the movie plays out. The only thing that is unfortunate about this is the talented Ferrera starring in another snoozer.

Shenae Grimes, Beverly Hills, 90210: Former Degrassi: The Next Generation star, Grimes, will play Annie in this 90210 remake on the CW Network. The Annie character will be based on the character played by Shannen Doherty in the original. Verdict: Although Doherty was a decent character on the show, off-set, she was generally too busy victimizing people to be a victim herself.

Angela Bassett Makes Rounds For Last ER Shift [Reuters]
Nicole Kidman Playing Dusty Springfield In Biopic, Says Michael Cunningham [NY Mag]
America Ferrera Joins Invisible [THR]
90210 Cast Continues To Grow [Variety]