Saturday, 14 February 2009

Who played the part?

Here are the names of twenty-three fictional characters who appeared in films, and two who appeared on TV. Who played them, and in what? (The first two were played by the same actor, and so were the last three.)

1 Jedediah Leland
2 Holly Martins
3 Joel Cairo
4 Rufus T. Firefly
5 Tony le St├ęphanois
6 Kate Bridges
7 J J Hunsecker
8 Tom Hagen
9 Laura Jesson
10 Elvira Condomine
11 Walter Neff
12 Jerry Lundegaard
13 Buck Turgidson
14 Arthur Wilson
15 Travis Bickle
16 Max von Mayerling
17 Elaine Robinson
18 Agatha D'Ascoyne
19 Addison DeWitt
20 Zoltan Karpathy
21 Ben Yussuf
22 Mr Kobayashi
23 Roy "Mad Dog" Earl
24 Fred C. Dobbs
25 Charlie Allnutt

It is unlikely that even the most ardent of cineasts (the OED calls this a quasi-Anglicized form) will happen to remember exactly the same names as I have, so a score of ten or above suggests a youth happily mis-spent at the cinema.

2 comments:

Froog said...

16, I think. I found the first two and the last two quite easy (but I happen to have just watched No. 25 again a few days ago, and had enjoyed the book as a boy), but I missed No. 23. I'm rather annoyed I missed No. 5, since it is a favourite of mine, but I haven't seen it in years.

I think the two TV ones were especially tricky - both for the somewhat distant era and the unexceptional nature of the names. I only twigged on the third or fourth pass, when I'd sorted out most of the film references I knew.

I seem to be weaker on the British films and the female characters. I'm not sure if there's any significance in that!

Tony said...

Froog:
I thought you'd do well, but 16 is brilliant.
I don't think the TV ones were more obscure than the others because of their age: they are both still being shown around the world and a good few of the others are even older. But I did make one of them a bit harder by including the actor's first name, which was heard in only two or three of the 68 episodes.