Washington flair ensemble

Denzel Washington can easily make you believe that you know him. He skilfully uses the familiarity audiences feel with a screen star they have watched for years, and adds to it the casual manner of your neighbour or basketball team-mate.

Truth be told, once he could indeed have lived next-door — back in his youth when alcohol seemed the best medicine for confusion and despair. But now he is one of the most respected and bankable actors of his generation, who has proved that being black in Hollywood is not a casting risk and whose skin colour has become completely irrelevant in his work.

The 47-year-old actor says he will always cherish the roles of black men he has played, such as a runaway slave in the civil war epic “Glory” (1989), a South African activist in “Cry Freedom” (1987) and a controversial Muslim leader in “Malcolm X” (1992)…

A very Cybill affair

Cybill Shepherd knows life like few other people do. From early stardom in Hollywood to neglect and rejection, to marriage, divorce and single parenthood, her story is one of intense emotions and great controversies. The mere mention of her name leaves no person neutral and no reaction mellow. She has been called “goddess” and “clown”, “loving” and “arrogant”, “vibrant” and “insane”. For years she viewed such extreme attitudes as part of the “bargain” she had “made with the devil”: “If I can only become rich and famous for doing what I love to do, I’ll accept the trade-off”.

Not any longer. “There is a myth that is completely untrue about me being difficult to work with,” she says passionately. “I don’t make unilateral decisions and I don’t have breakdowns; I’m wonderful, tremendously disciplined, loving and generous. I was blessed with beauty and talent, but I work really hard, like every job is the last I’ll ever have”…