14Ewan McGregor, Moulin Rouge
Director Baz Lurhman committed an act of cinematic madness in 2001, setting a 19th century story about a hooker and a writer in Paris, and having them sing modern pop songs. Moulin Rouge! exploded into theatres that summer, and quickly became a cult hit. The success of the film owed
to Lurhman’s use of lush color and style, though the movie also could not have worked without the performances of two charismatic actors, Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor.
Kidman became the biggest star in the world, and scored her first Oscar nod for Moulin Rouge!, and while hers is the star part, the movie belongs to her costar. Ewan McGregor, best known at the time for Trainspotting and the Star Wars prequels seemed like an unusual choice for the lead in a musical. Not only did McGregor prove his considerable acting chops, he also wowed audiences with his thereto unknown ability to sing. As McGregor crooned out Elton John’s “Your Song,” he melted the hearts of viewers everywhere…a feat he continues every time someone pops in the DVD.