Kim Basinger dives into indie territory in "One Square Mile," playing mom to a troubled son. Few details have emerged about her character in the film. But this certainly isn't the blonde bombshell's first foray into indie waters. Indeed, these sleepy roles aren't necessarily what she's famous for. One of Hollywood's most enduring celebrities, Basinger has had her fair share of cinematic hits and misses. But like others in the industry, there are certain movie roles that have cemented her in pop culture.
Elizabeth McGraw - "9 ½ Weeks" (1986)
Surprisingly, box office results weren't as profitable as expected; this movie was a flop in the eyes of many. But one could easily say that "9 ½ Weeks" has become one of Basinger's iconic films. Her on-screen chemistry with Rourke is legendary, as are the intense love scenes.
Why the role is significant: Few mainstream films during the 80s pushed the sexual envelope as much as this one. If you're still not a believer, simply watch the "9 ½ Weeks'" Director's Cut.
Lynn Bracken - "L.A. Confidential" (1997)
In 1997, she sizzled as a sexy prostitute at the center of a neo-noir thriller called "L.A. Confidential." Casting her as a Veronica Lake look-alike with a steely edge was a brilliant move. She took a punch from Russell Crowe but ultimately beat the likes of Julianne Moore ("Boogie Nights"), Minnie Driver ("Good Will Hunting"), and even "Titanic's" Gloria Stewart for that coveted Best Supporting Actress Academy Award.
Why the role is significant: Basinger had starred in more than 20 films before finally receiving her first Oscar for her turn as a 1950s bombshell. Needless to say, winning over such stiff competition has some historical merit.
Stephanie Smith - "8 Mile" (2002)
"L.A. Confidential" excluded, Kim remained pretty quiet during the 90s. As the New Millennium saw her diving back into acting, it wasn't until "8 Mile" that she really captured Hollywood's attention. As such, there was something incredibly convincing about the way Basinger poured herself into the role of Eminem's angst-ridden mother. Even Roger Ebert agreed that she hit a solid chord between "love and exasperation."
Why the role is significant: Although the movie was ultimately considered the Detroit rapper's breakout experience, Kim's "supporting" character garnered noteworthy attention, sort of by default.
Laura Sloan - "The Informers" (2008)
Basinger became Laura Sloan in 2008's sleeper hit, "The Informers" (which ironically, also featured Mickey Rourke.) The film, based on Bret Easton Ellis' novel of the same name, boasted a star-studded cast and focused on the morally corrupt lives of intertwining characters during the 1980s. Some may not consider Kim's role significant. But her character's put-upon vulnerability is something that she apparently does very well.
Why the role is significant: The film itself was relatively obscure. However, it was the first after a short string of flops to garner any real attention from critics, both glowing and scathing-due in part to Basinger's performance.
Vicki Vale - "Batman" (1989)
It was almost a fluke that the Georgia native was cast in the Vicki Vale role; several other actresses were actually considered before Kim ultimately accepted. Nonetheless, memories of her steamy performance in "9 ½ Weeks" lingered in our brains; her understated sex appeal in "Batman" was just campy enough to elevate the already impressive cast. It also didn't hurt that mega rock star Prince helped out with the score, even penning "Vicki Waiting," a song from the "Batman" album.
Why the role is significant: Due to director Tim Burton's vividly warped imagination behind the camera, Basinger was a natural in her nuanced role as a living, breathing comic book character.
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