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George Clooney's five best performances

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George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Katiedot on Mon Oct 10 2011, 12:31

Not sure that I agree with this assessment. Your thoughts?

From Herald Extra

The five best George Clooney performances

Christy Lemire | The Associated Press Daily Herald | Posted: Sunday, October 9, 2011 7:00 am

LOS ANGELES — A couple of weeks ago, we looked back on the eclectic career of Brad Pitt, and marveled at the intelligence of his choices as well as his instinct to shun his movie-star persona while still giving the people what they want.

Pitt’s friend and co-star in the “Ocean’s” movies, George Clooney, has shown similar tastes and daring both in front of and behind the camera. And in the process of staying true to his beliefs, he’s carved out one of the most respected careers in town.

This week, he directs the political drama “The Ides of March” and plays a supporting role as a governor seeking the Democratic presidential nomination. So here’s a look at his five best performances. As you can probably guess, I’d vote for him for anything:

∫ “Michael Clayton” (2007): Clooney gives a smart, subtly powerful performance in the title role as a “fixer” at a prestigious New York law firm. He’s a man who’s been around a long time and seen it all. He carries the cumulative weight of a lifetime of disappointments in his eyes, his voice, the way his shoulders hunch. And yet, Michael still responds proficiently and professionally to whatever challenge is thrust upon him. All the best of what Clooney can do is on display here: the dazzling charisma as well as the vulnerability. Writer-director Tony Gilroy gives Clooney an opportunity to do some of the best work of his career in a part that’s meaty but rarely flashy.

∫ “Syriana” (2005): Clooney famously cast aside his dashing good looks, gaining 30 pounds in 30 days, growing a beard and shaving his hairline to play Bob Barnes, a fictionalized version of former CIA officer Robert Baer. He was unrecognizable, a crucial piece in writer-director Stephen Gaghan’s dense and complicated film about the global oil industry, and the performance earned him the Academy Award for best supporting actor. Clooney was so dedicated, he severely injured his back shooting a torture scene, and was still hurt while directing and co-starring in “Good Night, and Good Luck.” This is a prime example of his willingness to reject the glamour of being a movie star in favor of doing smart, challenging work.

∫ “Out of Sight” (1998): Trading snappy banter with a tough-but-feminine Jennifer Lopez, Clooney was sexy as hell as a career bank robber in Steven Soderbergh’s funny and surprising film. The scene in which the two flirt at a hotel bar, with its warm lighting and flattering close-ups, is probably the movie’s best-known and it crackles with romantic tension. But Clooney is called upon to do much more than smolder. “Out of Sight” ranges from buddy comedy to gripping suspense to sultry noir, and Clooney has the versatility to keep up with all those varying genres. He’s probably a bad guy and he’s most certainly unreliable, but he’s also irresistible. Clooney makes that contrast work.

∫ “Up in the Air” (2009): Clooney is at the height of his dynamism here as a man who makes a living by firing other people. This would seem like an insurmountable contradiction, but Jason Reitman’s film fleshes out the character, Ryan Bingham, with shadings and subtlety, and Clooney gets excellent support from co-stars Vera Farmiga and Anna Kendrick. (All three received Academy Award nominations.) Ryan jets across the country, handing out pink slips without batting an eye and worrying only about increasing his frequent-flier miles. He breezes through life efficiently, and Clooney’s naturally masculine energy gives the character real zing, but he also finds the soulfulness that’s eventually required of the role, as well.

∫ “Fantastic Mr. Fox” (2009): Clooney’s work here also appeared on my list of the five best animated performances. “Up in the Air” earned him an Oscar nomination for best actor that year, but he’s just as memorable behind the microphone lending his smooth voice to the starring role of the crafty Mr. Fox. He brings all that charm in the richness of his delivery, all his signature smarts and presence to director Wes Anderson’s beautifully detailed stop-motion animation. And merely the idea of this handsome man playing a furry, little woodland creature — albeit a clever one with a sly sense of humor — is enough to bring a huge smile to your face.

∫ Think of any other examples? Share them with AP Movie Critic Christy Lemire through Twitter: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by melbert on Mon Oct 10 2011, 22:05

She said pretty much what I feel about those films.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by it's me on Mon Oct 10 2011, 22:23

difficult to me to make a choice

all I can say is that I have a soft spot for GNGL Can\'t read it!

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Joanna on Tue Nov 22 2011, 11:21

I also love GNGL 10 out of 10

Hmmmm not many comments about his work but plenty about his love life. Love7
Now why can that be I wonder ? lol!

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Missa on Wed Nov 23 2011, 00:00

Hmmm, I'd have to add "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" to that list. Even though he has a few moments where he falls into that "muggy" type of acting that only seems to appear when he's in broad comedies (see: Leatherheads), that movie just really makes me laugh. That type of character, totally overconfident with absolutely nothing to back it up, is really tricky to do well, and George pulls it off. I also may be the only person who a) saw Solaris in the movie theater, and b) liked it, but I thought he did a wonderful job in that as well.

The flip side of this list, the "Movies I Can't Stand Even Though George Is In Them" list, is only 2 films long. I still have not been able to sit through "The Men Who Stare at Goats" or "The Good German", the latter of which really disappointed me because I LOVED the book. There are about five different really great films that could have been made from the novel, and Soderbergh managed to make a bad one.

Just doing my part to even up the work/love life threads. Gonna need a little help to catch up here though.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Katiedot on Wed Nov 23 2011, 17:33

Gotta say, I agree with you on The Good German. The only nice thing I can think to say about it is that everyone involved in the production got so caught up in the look of the film (which was gorgeous) that they just forgot all the other aspects such as plot, acting etc.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Joanna on Wed Nov 23 2011, 18:35

Missa, I saw Solaris in the theatre too....thought it totally absorbing and the sound was hypnotic while in the space station.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Missa on Sat Jan 21 2012, 15:53

Just bumping this up, and wondering if we would now replace any of these five with his performance in either Ides or Descendants. I think Descendants should be on the list, but I'm having a hard time taking any of the others off. Maybe the Fantastic Mr. Fox, but only because it's animated. It's such a fun movie.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Katiedot on Sat Jan 21 2012, 17:09

Would you really call Fantastic Mr Fox a performance though? I liked it, but I just have a hard time as seeing it as performing.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Joanna on Sat Jan 21 2012, 17:46

I couldn't get into Mr Fox and fell asleep during Goats ! Both on DVD.
Another one I didn't enjoy was Up in the Air as at the time of watching it I found it depressing. I may give it another viewing to check it out again.
I really loved O Brother, Good Night and Good Luck and
Michael Clayton. And contrary to many others, I really enjoyed Leatherheads lol!
One of the main reasons I like about following GTC is the change of direction he often makes in his films and the things I learn from them too.
I wouldn't be keen about him making so called "blockbusters."

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by cindigirl on Sat Jan 21 2012, 17:57

Michael Clayton is my absolutely best favorite film. That was when I first became a fan. And I think Solaris was his best dramatic role ever and he played it so well. Up In The Air was depressing (especially since the economy is still in the dumper today) - Goats was - well I'm a christian so I won't say what I thought about it - and I like playing The Leatherheads dvd director's monologue because I love hearing his voice.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Joanna on Sat Jan 21 2012, 18:18

Oh right cindi, we have similar tastes and I must do that too
one day with Leatherheads !

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by cindigirl on Sat Jan 21 2012, 18:47

I knew there was something I liked about you Joanna. LOL Smile

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Missa on Sat Jan 21 2012, 18:54

Katiedot wrote:Would you really call Fantastic Mr Fox a performance though? I liked it, but I just have a hard time as seeing it as performing.

Sure, I'd call it a performance. It isn't like he just stood there and read a script straight through. He had to bring the character to life using just his voice.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by alriv on Sat Jan 21 2012, 19:55

1- Michael Clayton
2- The Descendants
3- O Brother, Where Art Thou?
4- Up in the air
5- Syriana

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by iamnoone on Mon Jan 23 2012, 23:52

Michael Clayton reigns along with brother where art tho and solaris as my top GC movies. I also love the perfect storm, and up in the air.

I've not seen the Fox movie or descendants, so I'm missing a few here. Can't wait to catch up. (been out of work so broke broke broke but starting new job tomorrow yay!)

I couldn't watch syriana, and didn't make it past the first 10 mins of Stare at Goats.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by it's me on Tue Jan 24 2012, 00:03

tomorrow?
good luck! Thumbs up! Give Flowers2

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by iamnoone on Tue Jan 24 2012, 00:33

Thank you it's me!

had to add, I loved burn while reading too. I thought George nailed the character, and brad pitt was hysterical as the dopey trainer.

I thought good night and good luck was an amazing film too (i have to admit that liked the good german although I agree it was very uneven )

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by zizi on Tue Jan 24 2012, 01:15

I would choose: No.1- The Descendants,
No.2- Michael Clayton followed by Good Night and Good Luck, Solaris and Syriana

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Maggy on Tue Jan 24 2012, 02:15

Well, so far I haven't seen a movie of George's I didn't like.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Katiedot on Sat Aug 10 2013, 08:52

Missa wrote:Just bumping this up, and wondering if we would now replace any of these five
Time for a refresh of the refresh?

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by it's me on Sat Aug 10 2013, 09:57

Maggy wrote:Well, so far I haven't seen a movie of George's I didn't like.

Thumbs up! Give hearts 

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by theminis on Sat Aug 10 2013, 13:40

Trying to narrow it down to my top 5, which will probably change depending on my mood next week

Up in the Air (really enjoyed his performance)
Michael Clayton (intense)
Dusk till Dawn (the arms, the tatts, the hair)
Intolerable Cruelty
Men Who Stare at Goats/Out of Sight

can we make it 6? Want to add Syrianna


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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by party animal - not! on Sat Aug 10 2013, 14:13

Good Night and Good Luck was AMAZING! He should have got Best Director for that.......on TV here last night, and made me want to go and find out about Ed Murrow all over again........

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Joanna on Sat Aug 10 2013, 15:00

Oh I agree pan....I got a real buzz watching it for the first time in a cinema.... Thinking "How great to have been a member of that team with Murrow at that time"
Still love that film !

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Lighterside on Sat Aug 10 2013, 15:02

I don't know how GNGL was not included in that list above.  It's clearly his signature piece in all the body of work he's done to date.  I really can't pick just 5 favorites.  He's been involved in so many really different types of scripts, none of them considered "action hero" stuff, except the one we won't mention involving nipples and that one was one of the worst scripts ever written, IMO.

And I'm among the crowd that thinks Solaris is one of his best acting roles to date.  That role took him completely out of his comfort zone and he was brilliant in it...and the butt shots were just a "gimme" for the ladies! Very Happy And I also loved Goats and Leatherheads...the Good German I didn't see.

I think he has the best comedic timing and I'm always glad to see him using it.  The complaints about the newest trailer seem to stem from that comedic ability, which comes naturally to him and I think that he's going to pleasantly surprise everyone with MM.  He's taking a very sober subject, that has been done to death and telling the story from a completely different perspective, with some very intelligent, talented and creative co-conspirators and I think it's going to be fantastic.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by it's me on Sat Aug 10 2013, 16:27

I guess so... Very Happy I really guess so Thumbs up! 

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Joanna on Sat Aug 10 2013, 16:50

When I saw Solaris for the first time in the cinema 
he was so sombre and depressed for so long at the beginning, in charector....I could feel the pain. 
Then in the flashback scene at the party he was so outgoing and cheerful as he is normally. 
His acting ability really struck me then.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Missa on Sat Aug 10 2013, 17:06

I enjoyed the flashback parts of Solaris that told the story of their relationship on earth. I would watch an entire film just about that story.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Maggy on Sat Aug 10 2013, 18:48

it's me wrote:
Maggy wrote:Well, so far I haven't seen a movie of George's I didn't like.
Thumbs up! Give hearts 
Right back at you, hon!

Hehehe

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Lighterside on Sat Aug 10 2013, 21:53

Missa wrote:I enjoyed the flashback parts of Solaris that told the story of their relationship on earth.  I would watch an entire film just about that story.
I agree and the chemistry between George and Natascha McElhone was electric, amazing and which I thought Steven Soderbergh brought out in them beautifully.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by theminis on Sun Aug 11 2013, 00:39

The problem I had was picking 5, Solaris was excellent, enjoyed the flashback scenes the most, and spot on about the Chemistry - GNGL will no doubt be added to my list once I actually see it (shock horror)

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by m4rose on Sun Aug 11 2013, 01:11

I really liked One Fine Day with Michelle Phieffer. He was adorable in that movie. Very Happy 

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by theminis on Sun Aug 11 2013, 01:24

Yep that's another good one, impossible to narrow down to 5 now

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Nicky80 on Sun Aug 11 2013, 12:34

Oh I loved One Fine Day. Just amazing. Yeah I couldn't it narrow down to 5 either. He is too good in all of them.

If you got too many choices you never make the right decision   Laughing

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Lighterside on Sun Aug 11 2013, 14:14

@m4rose...that's another great example of real chemistry between two actors... One Fine Day.  They just popped right off the screen, the chemistry between them was so apparent and disarming!  You see that so rarely now.  And I hate to bring up the comparison of Mr. & Mrs. Smith but I have to because that kind of chemistry is almost lost now in the new crop of actors coming up.  I just don't see it in anything I've seen made recently.  It's a shame really.


Last edited by Lighterside on Sun Aug 11 2013, 14:18; edited 1 time in total

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by silly girl on Sun Aug 11 2013, 14:17

These are all his film roles....I think as far as performance goes Doug Ross would need to be added to the list. Oh and Michael Clayton is my favorite to.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Lighterside on Sun Aug 11 2013, 14:21

silly girl wrote:These are all his film roles.....  
I know who we're talking about. LOL Or are you referring to television versus film?  

I brought up the Jolie/Pitt film as an example of the same kind of real chemistry that George has with a good many of his leading ladies, that I don't see in today's new crop of young actors coming up. Very Happy 

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by silly girl on Sun Aug 11 2013, 14:27

Yes I am referring to television vs theatrical films. Wink

The article says his "performances" and he has done some of his best work on television. Oh and I agree about the chemistry....hard to find nowadays...so much seems forced.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Missa on Sun Aug 11 2013, 14:31

If were going to talk about chemistry, I can't think of many pairings that compare to George and Jennifer Lopez in Out of Sight. I haven't liked her in a single thing since, but Steven and George got a terrific performance out of her, and that love scene...Shocked 

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Lighterside on Sun Aug 11 2013, 14:34

@silly girl...I was just teasing.   I figured that's what you meant...lol! 

I didn't watch ER...I totally loathe medical shows. The last thing I want to do is cry about some imaginary illness, when there is plenty of it to go around everywhere I look.  It's just me, I know.  I want to laugh and be entertained, when I sit down to watch something or I want to be riveted by a mystery and see quality television.  Otherwise, I have other things to do and can't be bothered.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by theminis on Sun Aug 11 2013, 22:20

Lighterside - you are missing some of Georges most riveting acting moments by not watching ER - and the chemistry between him and Julianna is genuinely a delight.

Watched the peacemaker last night, not in my top 5 but enjoyed it nonetheless.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Mazy on Mon Aug 12 2013, 01:53

I think that "The Descendants" would be my all time favorite to date. Next it would have to be "Syriana"  and "The Perfect Storm", "Three Kings" and "Leatherheads." But I could list all of them for different reasons. His characters all seem to have a real depth to the psyche, no matter what the genre'.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by theminis on Mon Aug 12 2013, 02:40

Damn it I forgot 3 kings, so enjoyed that one - okay insisting we make it a top ten now, 5 too hard

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Nicky80 on Mon Aug 12 2013, 08:54

LOL Top 10 sounds good  Thumbs up!

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Katiedot on Mon Aug 12 2013, 09:23

Nope, vetoing that and forcing you to choose top 5 only! Razz Razz 

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Nicky80 on Mon Aug 12 2013, 10:37

So mean Evil or Very Mad 

Ok my favouties are:

The Descendants (I love the scene when he is running down the hill)
Up in the air
The Ides of March
Out of Sight
Good night, and good luck

Probably tomorrow I have a different top 5 Razz 

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Lighterside on Mon Aug 12 2013, 14:20

@theminis...I know I've been told on a number of occasions how good he was in it and even though it's George, I still wouldn't watch that show. And he was a pediatrician in that and that would make it worse, watching sick children...not my idea of fun. I know, like I said, it's just me! There are many successful medical shows but I've never watched any of them.

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by theminis on Mon Aug 12 2013, 22:57

I completely understand where you are coming from, I have found myself since having children that a lot of shows I used to watch pale now especially when involving kids - I confess Ive only watched a couple of episodes on DVD since the show finished - I myself have been to hospital on at least 6 occasions with very ill little ones so its a bit too real for me - my suggestion was purely light-hearted, hes good perve value on that show.

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Clooney's best (minus Batman)

Post by Mark Browning on Sun Dec 08 2013, 11:28

I would agree with a lot of what's been said here but would bump up Out of Sight (the on-screen chemistry between George and Miss lopez just crackles) and drop The Descendants, which is just too sentimental for me. O Brother comes in for some criticism due to a slight 'hokeyness' but that's just in line with the tone of the film as a whole. It was hard not to include Three Kings but the direction hinders rather than helps there (and is partly why Clooney has not worked with David O. Russell since). Michael Clayton as no. !? Certainly- brooding, serious, thoughtful. And that's just George. It has everything that great art should & repays repeat viewing.  Batman? Not so much. Might appear on a different list- top five worst perhaps.

My top five
1. Michael Clayton
2. Syriana
3. Out of Sight
4. Up in the Air
5. O Brother

Check out my detailed thoughts on each & every Clooney film:

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Mark Browning
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Join date : 2013-05-18

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Re: George Clooney's five best performances

Post by Sponsored content Today at 12:27


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