Finally, my hometown of Modesto, California has something worth celebrating. No, we haven't inched past being #298 on the "300 Best Places to Live" list but we do have a "local boy makes good" story. My classmate, Jeremy Renner, has been nominated for an Oscar for his role in "The Hurt Locker."
Modesto, in my opinion, hasn't had anything to celebrate since "American Graffiti." Certainly, it didn't help our fare city's ratings to have David Letterman mock our junior college while displaying an image of the school's marquee which read: "Congratulations to Acadamee Award Nominee, Jeremy Renner!" "What do you make of that?" Letterman asked Jeremy. "Don't they know how to SPELL in Modesto, California??!"
As for Jeremy, well, gosh, where do I start? I had the pleasure (?) of spending an evening with Jeremy and 100 of our classmates at the 20 year reunion for my graduating class this summer. Jeremy's attempts to be charming were sloppy, at best, perhaps from all the alcohol he was ingesting.
We chatted for awhile at the bar and then at my table. I asked him about life in Hollywood and what it was like to make movies. He was interrupted frequently and he bought a drink for everyone who stopped to say hello.
Ironically, Jeremy and I were the only "singles" at the reunion. So I guess it seemed natural to have the most conversation with him and he seemed game (and drunk enough) to play the "so what do you want out of life" game. Only his answers weren't very charming or precise and to be honest, I kept thinking that if I didn't know better, he could still be the short kid who worked the cosmetics counter at our local Macys. Really.
Still though, Jeremy is a super sweet guy who undoubtedly will go far in his Hollywood career.
And maybe at our next reunion, he'll have some deeper and more profound comments on Hollywood life. Or, he might bring an interesting date. Just last week, People.com reported that Charlize Theron was his newest love interest. In any event, I've heard that "The Hurt Locker" is pretty brilliant and that Jeremy's character is spot-on. I wish him all the best in the Oscar race this Sunday!