When you think of Kristen Bell, you think of her as being in a more comfortable place in the movies than the competitive A-list crowd. Since the TV series “Veronica Mars” ended in 2007, Bell has done well becoming more or less a character actress in movies with various ranges of quality. A lot of those movies have been in the indie circuit, with some of her most recent roles being as co-star in “Safety Not Guaranteed” and with her fiance Dax Shepard in “Hit and Run.”
Everything may have changed for Bell, though, when you see the stunning success of the Kickstarter campaign for a “Veronica Mars” feature film. It puts a whole new spin on where she could go as actress, particularly when it collides with the idea that she’s been gravitating to voice work in animated films. Regardless, the idea of her being a lead in a high-profile “Mars” feature may need some scrutiny.
No matter that the film has a substantial budget thanks to diehard fans of the series, it can’t be done in the exact same way it was for TV. One of its strongest suits was its Film Noir style that could translate very well on the big screen. Bell, however, will need to have her Mars character written very strongly to stand out as a leading lady.
Other than just a few cinematic examples, her move to co-star in movies may be by design or because studios demand it. While a beautiful and appealing actress, Bell’s personality and acting style aren’t necessarily tantamount to what you consider a leading lady quite yet. You can say that especially because she’s acted more as light comedienne for a considerable time rather than mastering the “Mars” world of Noir drama.
There’s also that other issue of whether a TV show can translate well to the big screen. Despite the “Veronica Mars” movie playing to its fans, can the Mars character be made a little more complex for the sake of theatricality? Bell might be able to tap into her old drama mode considering she’s been playing Jeannie Van Der Hooven on Showtime’s “House of Lies” for the last year.
If you remember the dramatic situations behind the Veronica Mars character, though, you know it’s the most dramatic plot Bell has ever done. Although the show did have blazing wit at times, which gives Bell some fuel to translate well on the big screen in the part. She also may not have to worry as much about being an over-the-top leading lady if the film turns into something I suspect could happen.
One of the long forgotten and overdue elements to filmdom is the low budget serial. It’s not hard to imagine the “Veronica Mars” movie turning into a series of little films that work much like a TV series. With that, Bell could take her better-suited persona from television and make the movies feel more like big event television.
It’s something the movies could use more of as television starts to capture Kristen Bell and other stars for bigger deal projects than movies can.