Silence speaks volumes as actors go “Speechless” for writers


How do you get a bunch of actors

to stop talking? Wait, wait: I know this one. Does it involve a pineapple,

a screwdriver and a three-legged dog? Oh, sorry; you weren’t joking?

In all seriousness, the way to get a group of top-flight, big-name actors

to finally stop speaking is to stop giving them scripts. A slew of A-list

actors are appearing in the new Speechless campaign, a collaboration between the striking

members of the Writers Guild of America and members of the Screen Actors


So far 14 black-and-white,

mostly wordless spots have been released, with more on the way. Among

the actors already appearing are Oscar winners like Holly Hunter,

Susan Sarandon
and Sean Penn and TV heavyweights like

America Ferrera, Eva Longoria
and Ed Asner. Even L Word

alums like Rosanna Arquette and Alan Cumming joined in

the silence. Here are some of my favorites so far. (For the entire list,

check the Speechless channel

on Brightcove

The entire cast of Ugly

shows how silence is golden:

Holly Hunter struggles with

an outsourced script doctor:

Laura Linney seeks an intervention:

Kate Beckinsale and David Schwimmer can’t find the words:

So, how effective will the

Marcel Marceau-ing be in settling the writers strike? It’s hard to say, but

the array of talent the WGA aligned for the spots is impressive. Talks

between the writers and producers resumed Monday, and there seems to

be cautious optimism in some camps. So, what do you think

of the spots? And, more important, will they help end the strike?