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S19: Lea Thompson: All The Right Moves

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Lea Thompson is perhaps best known for her role as the various incarnations of Lorraine McFly in “Back to the Future I, II, and III” (Kid’s Choice Film Actress Award) and as the star of “Caroline in the City” (People’s Choice Award). Thompson has starred in more than 30 films, 25 television movies, 4 television series, more than 20 ballets, and starred on Broadway in “Cabaret”. Lea can currently be seen on ABC Family’s Peabody Award winning hit show “Switched at Birth,” where she acts and directs. Lea’s movie credits include: “All the Right Moves,” “Red Dawn,” “Some Kind of Wonderful,” “The Beverly Hillbillies,” “Howard The Duck”(star and vocals), Clint Eastwood’s “J. Edgar;” the 2014 Sundance favorite “Ping Pong Summer;” and soon to be released “Left Behind” starring Nicolas Cage.

Lea lives in Los Angeles with her husband of twenty-five years, film/television director Howard Deutch, and their two talented daughters, Madelyn and Zoey, along with many dogs, fish, horses, chickens, a cat, tortoise, and parrot. She supports and often performs for breast cancer, mental health, and Alzheimer’s charities. Lea is currently in pre-production on “The Year of Spectacular Men,” a film written by her daughter Madelyn Deutch, and is writing her first book of essays.

Dancing with Artem Chigvintsev.

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I thought the title should be All The Right Moves (because of that Tom Cruise movie). Anywho, I'm mildly interested in the pairing of LT with Artem. I might check in occasionally through the season.

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About four or five weeks ago, I literally ran into Ms. Thompson at the Chambers Street IRT train station in lower Manhattan.  I  smiled and told her that I was a huge fan of her work.  She just looked at me and scurried off.  I was devastated.  My daughter wanted to see if she had a twitter account so that she could tell her off, but I told her it wasn't worth it. 

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Lea was on ET tonight and it just seemed awkward. The hosts Nancy + Kevin were giving her lots of compliments and even surprised her with a  visit from a friend bearing a bouquet of flowers and there was just no warmth. Even Lea greeting her "close friend" seemed awkward. I had no particular opinion on Lea.  Hearing she has a ballet background I thought we'd be in for many weeks of great dancing from her. Now I'm not so sure if she'll connect with the audience.

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Lea was on ET tonight and it just seemed awkward. The hosts Nancy + Kevin were giving her lots of compliments and even surprised her with a  visit from a friend bearing a bouquet of flowers and there was just no warmth. Even Lea greeting her "close friend" seemed awkward. I had no particular opinion on Lea.  Hearing she has a ballet background I thought we'd be in for many weeks of great dancing from her. Now I'm not so sure if she'll connect with the audience.

Maybe she's still bitter about the time Mikhail Baryshnikov told her that she was "a beautiful dancer, but too stocky."

Despite that, apparently she danced with the American Ballet Theatre for years, and well as several other troupes.

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She had a very night start, though I noticed the shoulders creeping up. If she can master the hip action for Latin, she will last for a long time.

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A very nice start but not as fluid as I expected she would be. A little overscored IMO. I really wonder how big her fan base is.

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A very nice start but not as fluid as I expected she would be. A little overscored IMO. I really wonder how big her fan base is.

Do Caroline In The City fans actually exist as a vote base?  I doubt it.

 

She was little more than a prop in the Back To The Future films, so it would take a TON of nostalgia for that to matter.

 

She COULD actually have more of a voting base from a moderate role on an ABC Family Teen Soap than either of the above (but not a ton).

 

That said, she could gain a fanbase spontaneously as the weeks go by.  It happens, right?

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Do Caroline In The City fans actually exist as a vote base? - Kromm

 

 

Thank you!  I new I recognized the woman they kept cutting to in the audience.

She did better than I thought she would. I'll be cheering for her.

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What about Howard the Duck fans? I kid! Sort of.

In the intro, she looked a little awkward swishing her skirt around like Cha Cha Di Gregorio so I wasn't expecting much until she mentioned her ballet background. She will probably have a lovely waltz and an okay contemporary and possibly a good Argentine tango but be awkward in jive, Latin, and anything that isn't slow or graceful.

She seemed perfectly normal during rehearsal and I thought it was both funny and self aware that she didn't want to look creep if she had a much younger partner.

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  According to her twitter she and Artem are dancing

the jive

. I am hoping that she is not going to get lost in the shuffle because so far I like her dancing and I am enjoying Artem. I knew of Lea and her experience but I didn't expect her to be one of my favorites. I would love to see her and Alfonso in the finale. 

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I think Lea is a delight and has completely embraced the experience.  I do not for a single second believe she was ever "in danger" last week and that she was placed under the red lights just to create "drama."

Edited by OakGoblinFly

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I liked her dance last night but she didn't have enough flicks and kicks. She was miles better than some of the others though and actually danced a jive. The song she picked was spot on. Oakgoblinfly I felt the same way until I saw her scores last night. They were quite high and normally a jive with hardly any flicks and kicks(which is a major jive element) you don't get that kind of score. I actually voted last night because I would hate to see her go home so early.

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I was nervous watching the rehearsal package...but overall she did well.  My only problem was she seemed to be dancing hunched over? I kept focusing on that.  The Latin dances may not come naturally to her but her ballroom will be exquisite I think.

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I wonder if she just gets so into the dance that she just doesn't notice her posture is slipping. I know when I'm enjoying my time on the dance floor I'm not thinking about my posture. I hope that Artem notices this and gets her to work on it. Ballroom is definitely going to be her strong suit. It's the closest to ballet in terms of technique. 

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And since several of us HERE noticed the bad posture, why didn't the * professional * judges, and give her that feedback?!  Ye gawds, that is what bugs me about this show sometimes; give more positive, helfpul, * constructive * feedback (especially in the first week), and stop with some of the other nonsensical comments. Sheesh.

Edited by marinite
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That's my frustration with this week as well. Bruno mentioned her one little misstep and that was it. Len didn't think she could do it(ouch) then told her it was great and well the other two obviously gushed. Why bother having judges if they aren't going to judge? Lea seems to be the kind of person would take the criticism and work her ass of to correct her mistakes. 

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Lea had a harder time tonight. She still did well but I did notice the one mistake she made tonight. I hate that once again her placement was in the early to middle part of the show. I don't know if her fear of going home got to her or she just plain messed up. I really want her to stick around because I think she really is having fun, she's a blast to watch and she's a good dancer. I have to say too that she really held her own against the stupid pro dancers that they put alongside her. This dance was the first dance I feel that she wasn't sure of herself. 

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Lea and Artem are going to be doing a 

contemporary number dedicated to her father who passed away.

 All this week I have been trying to think of who I would want Lea to be partnered with if she makes it to the partner switch week. I finally decided that I would love to see her with Tony. I think they would have a blast and he would choreograph a beautiful number for her. My second choice is Val. 

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Lea and Artem are going to be doing a 

contemporary number dedicated to her father who passed away.

 All this week I have been trying to think of who I would want Lea to be partnered with if she makes it to the partner switch week. I finally decided that I would love to see her with Tony. I think they would have a blast and he would choreograph a beautiful number for her. My second choice is Val. 

 

A Lea fan is voting like crazy for Lea & Derek. If you want her with Tony, you gotta tweet votes - lots and lots of votes!

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Lea had a harder time tonight. She still did well but I did notice the one mistake she made tonight. I hate that once again her placement was in the early to middle part of the show. I don't know if her fear of going home got to her or she just plain messed up. I really want her to stick around because I think she really is having fun, she's a blast to watch and she's a good dancer. I have to say too that she really held her own against the stupid pro dancers that they put alongside her. This dance was the first dance I feel that she wasn't sure of herself. 

 

I agree with you.  It was a shame too because her legs are so long and beautiful they really make the cha cha look good.  I don't know what's going on with her posture though but she needs to correct that ASAP.  She looks like she needs to stand straight.  I thought the same thing about her jive.  

 

She has contemporary this week I think it will be beautiful.  She said in an interview that it was dedicated to her father who passed.  I can see Artem really going for a flowy balletic type of contemporary that plays to her strengths.  I think this will be her come back week.

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I feel nervous for Lea and Artem, given the elimination is based on last week.  I thought there was a lot of good in her cha cha but it wasn't a standout dance for them and I fear they may just get lost in the mix.  Neither can rely on a ready made fan base.  

 

I'm not sure how much contemporary Artem has done, but he has quite a lyrical, balletic style himself, so I guess this would be a natural route for them both.

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A Lea fan is voting like crazy for Lea & Derek. If you want her with Tony, you gotta tweet votes - lots and lots of votes!

 

About the only thing that would be good about a Lea/Derek pairing is that she'd be practically immune from elimination with him as her pro.  You really think the Golden Boy is going to get dumped THIS early on, even if their dance is a complete disaster that the judges shred?

Edited by legaleagle53

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Having Derek for a partner won't save her from going home. If she were to be voted off it would be her and Artem leaving not her and Derek. I don't think she's going to make it that far anyway. It pisses me off to see the judges kiss Michaels ass even though his dance was horrible and then they jump all over her even though she was 10 times better than Michael. 

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I think Lea can really pull off an outstanding contemporary this week. I think she'll be able to let go and really shine in a way that I think her frustration with the ballroom technique hasn't allowed her to.   I wouldn't be surprised if she gets a very high score. 

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If Artem can get her to channel her inner ballerina she should be just fine. Both dances are all about extension, fluidity, grace, interpretation of emotions. I just hope that emotion doesn't overtake her though and the dance falters because of it. I wouldn't blame her nor would the public but I think the judges would pounce on any little mistake she made because that seems to be their MO with her. 

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Leas dance last night was just beautiful. Deserving of a perfect score(damn you America). Contemporary sometimes can be boring or lifeless but she brought so much emotion and beauty to the dance. I also have to give her snaps for not falling apart during the dance. It would be so easy to let emotion get the best of her and she didnt. Artem is a gem and I love that she and him are partners. I was so scared she was going to be out last night I was pacing while they were making the safe/not safe announcements. Can't wait to see what she's doing next week. I'm sad that she will probably end up with Derek because I cannot stand him at this point. Also I just love watching her on the show. She has such enthusiasm not only when it comes to her dances but everyone else. She's always hugging someone or clapping happily for someone. It's a treat to watch her on the show.

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I think I know why Lea looks a little hesitant to the judges and viewers at times. It's because she is trying to conserve her energy throughout the dance. According to her she isn't in shape and if that's the truth then it's going to hurt her dancing. I'm surprised that Artem hasn't worked on that with her because I think that could make a big difference in her dances.

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So Switched at Birth started up again today which means Lea is going to be pulling double duty. It's not really an ideal situation but I'm hoping that she can pull it off. Also if you go on her twitter there is a short video of her and Artem practicing their dance for next week. 

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So Switched at Birth started up again today which means Lea is going to be pulling double duty. It's not really an ideal situation but I'm hoping that she can pull it off. Also if you go on her twitter there is a short video of her and Artem practicing their dance for next week. 

Your right it's not the ideal time to be doing double duty.  I know the schedule for a tv show can be crazy hours.  I think we are getting to that point in the season where there will be 2 dances also.  I hope she can keep it up.  She will want to keep the momentum up from this week I think.

 

As a side note...the clip of her dance for next week...she looks good!  Her legs are amazing!

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I wish that the troupe wasn't dancing with Lea this week. I don't watch the show to see the pros I'm watching to see Lea dance.I don't think it does her any favors. Plus with the shit camera work I end up seeing more of the troupe than Lea. 

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I wish they would all cut it out with the troupe.  It's distracting.  But I suspect TPTB also pressure them all to do so.

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I think that troupe or backup dancers only work well if the central couple and the celeb in particular has enough of a presence or dance ability to command attention for themselves. 99.9% of the time on DWTS, this is not the case since the celeb is at best an amateur dancer or at worse a complete novice. The troupe distracts and highlights the weaknesses of the celeb. Even last season, Meryl who was an incredibly capable dancer didn't come across as well when she was dancing against the backdrop of troupe members.

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Except that my favorites are doing well this season with troupe dancers. I really loved how Janel took command of West Side Story.  But  I never was a fan of Davis and White, I skipped last season. 

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I think that troupe or backup dancers only work well if the central couple and the celeb in particular has enough of a presence or dance ability to command attention for themselves. 99.9% of the time on DWTS, this is not the case since the celeb is at best an amateur dancer or at worse a complete novice. The troupe distracts and highlights the weaknesses of the celeb. Even last season, Meryl who was an incredibly capable dancer didn't come across as well when she was dancing against the backdrop of troupe members.

 

I suspect distraction might be the intent when the troupe is dancing more than a few seconds at the beginning or the end.  It seems some pros rely on the troupe heavily and other pros very limitedly.  That some pros are very limited in the use of the troupe makes me think TPTB aren't pressuring the pros to use them.  Meryl had 1 dance, I forget which one, where she wore the clunky high wedge booties - I completely lost track of her for most of the dance because of all the troupe dancers on the floor.

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I suspect distraction might be the intent when the troupe is dancing more than a few seconds at the beginning or the end.  It seems some pros rely on the troupe heavily and other pros very limitedly.  That some pros are very limited in the use of the troupe makes me think TPTB aren't pressuring the pros to use them.  Meryl had 1 dance, I forget which one, where she wore the clunky high wedge booties - I completely lost track of her for most of the dance because of all the troupe dancers on the floor.

 

I agree that distraction is often the intent.  Lea's number IMO wouldn't have come across as well last week without all the walker work with Val/troupe last week.  Same with Janel's WSS, but that's not a discussion for this thread.  Though the one thing I'd add is that Val is at least fairly clever in terms of how he uses the troupe so it wasn't like Lea was asked to do side by side work with Lindsay and Jenna and came off negatively as a result.  He just used some of the production number around Lea to distract from what she was or wasn't doing.   Whereas I think people may be refering to Meryl's salsa last season where she was basically dancing in front of the troupe members and it just highlighted that even somebody as good as Meryl is not going to come off great when asked to dance in front of pro ballroom dancers. 

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By that logic it is courageous and pretty cool that non-professional dancers have the cajones to dance with the pros.  The ones this season who have been successful are Janel, who did awesome on WSS, including a bit of solo work,  and Lea who did fairly well keeping up on a very energetic piece.  I'd like to see the others do more.  

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I agree that distraction is often the intent.  Lea's number IMO wouldn't have come across as well last week without all the walker work with Val/troupe last week.  Same with Janel's WSS, but that's not a discussion for this thread.  Though the one thing I'd add is that Val is at least fairly clever in terms of how he uses the troupe so it wasn't like Lea was asked to do side by side work with Lindsay and Jenna and came off negatively as a result.  He just used some of the production number around Lea to distract from what she was or wasn't doing.   Whereas I think people may be refering to Meryl's salsa last season where she was basically dancing in front of the troupe members and it just highlighted that even somebody as good as Meryl is not going to come off great when asked to dance in front of pro ballroom dancers. 

Even with the trio dances where the couples must choose an eliminated pro or troupe member, the pros mostly avoid that side-by-side comparison by choosing an opposite sex 3rd pro for their partner - the 3rd pro is a male if the star is female or the 3rd pro is a female if the star is a male.  If I recall correctly, the only one who broke that pattern was Karina who chose Sasha for Apollo on All-Stars for a jive.  Sasha had to slow himself down considerably to Apollo's speed but Apollo held up pretty well. But then Apollo got eliminated the following week.

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I am really curious to see what Lea and Artems salsa looks like. I'm hoping that her working on her show again hasn't hindered their rehearsal time and that it doesn't show in her dance. Looking at one of their rehearsal pics on instagram I'm guessing that lifts are going to be legal tonight.

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