The student-run news site of Le Moyne College.

The Dolphin

The student-run news site of Le Moyne College.

The Dolphin

The student-run news site of Le Moyne College.

The Dolphin

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via The Huntington
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“Best Villain Ever” Giancarlo Esposito comes to Le Moyne


As part of FilmTalkSeries, a collaboration between the Le Moyne College Film Program and the Syracuse International Film Festival, actor and director Giancarlo Esposito will give a presentation Tuesday, Feb. 28 in the W. Carroll Coyne Center for the Performing Arts. Esposito is known for his roles in the movies “Do the Right Thing” and “The Usual Suspects” and for the television series “Breaking Bad.”

“He’s a remarkably good actor,” English and communications professor Julie Grossman said, “and he’s had a lot of experience, both in Hollywood and in independent film.”

“He has a rich, significant history as a film and TV actor and as an actor of color,” assistant professor of sociology Farha Ternikar said. “His television work represents what actors could be doing now at the caliber of movies.”

According to Grossman, this is not the first time Esposito has visited Le Moyne.

“Just after ‘Do the Right Thing,’ more than 20 years ago, he came to Le Moyne to give a talk,” Grossman said. “Apparently, the students brought him here.”

The upcoming talk will reportedly consist of Esposito discussing his experience as an actor and director, film clips of his work, a question-and-answer session and finally, a meet and greet reception in the lobby. Esposito has recently garnered what Grossman calls “cult status” as a result of his memorable portrayal of drug kingpin Gus Fring on the critically acclaimed series “Breaking Bad.”

“He plays one of those great characters that you want to hate, but you also want him to stay on the show,” Ternikar said. “He’s so nuanced and multilayered. Every bit of his backstory makes you want more. Every time he’s on, you wonder how he became a major player and a drug cartel.”

“Stephen King recently made a comment about his character, calling him the ‘best villain ever on TV,’” Grossman said. “That’s what should I put on the poster for this event. ‘The best villain ever is coming to Le Moyne!’”

Both Grossman and Ternikar expressed high praise for the show itself.

“A lot of students are really into this show,” Grossman said, “as I am, having obsessively watched all four seasons in a very short period of time.”

“It’s one of the best shows on TV since ‘The Sopranos’ and ‘The Wire,’” Ternikar said. “It’s characterized by superb acting, really strong stories, and sophisticated development of its’ characters. It’s not like TV in the ‘80s, which was considered second-tier to movies. Now you look at shows like ‘Breaking Bad’ and ‘The Wire’ and you wonder, ‘why aren’t some blockbusters as good as this?’”

From the sound of things, a big turnout is expected for the event.

“I was really happy about the success of the recent Ben Burtt talk,” Grossman said, “and there’s a special kind of energy surrounding this visit. I’m hoping lots of people come.”

“This is exciting for a small school,” Ternikar said. “I have friends who serve as faculty at Syracuse University who will drive over here to see it. That sort of thing happens only once every couple of years. I’m proud of having such quality programming on such a small campus.”

The Giancarlo Esposito talk takes place Tuesday, Feb. 28, at 7 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center. Tickets are free for Le Moyne students.

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