Home Uncategorized Jane Fonda Rocks “The Newsroom” With Oscar Sized Performance

Last night’s HBO drama “The Newsroom” got a jolt of electricity–at last. It came from two time Oscar winner Jane Fonda, who gave an Oscar worthy performance and stole the entire season in one fell swoop. Fonda plays ACN owner Leona Lansing, and is used sparingly by show creator Aaron Sorkin. She’s nominated for an Emmy from last season (and deserves to win, hands down).

Last night Fonda appeared in the final, surprising scene of a very busy episode that revealed the entire Genoa story– how ACN was duped by producer Jerry Dantana and a congressman (excellent work by Frank Wood) who blamed his son’s death on being fired from his internship. When Charlie (Sam Waterston) and Will (Jeff Daniels) go to Leona to resign, Fonda surprises them. First of all, she looks like a million bucks. Second, she’s a little buzzed from a dinner for the Tribeca Film Festival. She refuses their resignations, and makes a speech that is absolutely phenomenal. The entire episode ends with Fonda in a cold cut that’s like a cold wet wash cloth in the face. It’s just wonderful. HBO has no clip from the show, so you’ll have to watch the whole thing or skip to the end.

If you want to see lightning strike through a scene, then this is it. Why Fonda doesn’t get a “special guest star” credit up front when she’s on perplexes me. “The Newsroom” needs her. The show can be very whiny otherwise….

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Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
5 replies to this post
  1. 75 years old? Va va voom! Jane Fonda is a National Treasure and all the right wing low IQ scums in the world can’t touch her. She is amazing.

  2. I LOVE this show! I’m amazed that the actors can remember all the fast track dialogue. But, Jane Fonda was positively riveting and looking absolutely gorgeous during the very last scene of the season finale! She still has whatever it takes to light up the screen when she’s in a scene. She looks amazing and she can WOW you with her lines. I think all these actors are fantastic, but I am really impressed with Jane Fonda. She still has that magic! Eat your heart out Ted Turner! ;-)

  3. You know you’re watching a star when you can’t turn away from the screen or stop watching them when on the stage…Jane Fonda is one.

  4. I came to watch Newsroom very late — just started actually. I like to wait until the initial hype has died down. Fortunately, I can access all the episodes On Demand and view them in sequence. Though I’m well into Season 1, Jane Fonda is, as expected, a standout character as expected. Enjoy the show generally, but the hysteria over the ‘romances’ can be very tiresome at times. When that happens, the newsroom turns into a playpen of frustrated infants unable to express themselves and whining over what they want and don’t have. However, when it’s time to ‘do the news’ everybody gets to work. The younger characters are ‘forming’ and I especially like Sloan, the brainy, cerebral, attractive economist who is tested on air with a major story totally outside her field of expertise and comfort zone. I will continue to watch.

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