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Whatever Happened to Josh Hartnett? An Exploration of His Recent Work

Illustration for article titled Whatever Happened to Josh Hartnett? An Exploration of His Recent Work

Remember Josh Hartnett, the heartthrob of the late 90's and early aughts with the irresistible cleft chin? Of course you do: he scuffled with Chris Klein over Leelee Sobieski in Here on Earth, fought the Japanese with Ben Affleck in Pearl Harbor and struggled, charmingly, with his hormones in 40 Days and 40 Nights. But where has our cleft-chinned crush gone?


Well, after reportedly turning down the role of Superman in Batman vs. Superman multiple times, he went on to act in a lot of lesser known films — like August, I Come with Rain, and a martial-arts action film, Bunraku. I miss him. So today, we're going to take a look at a more recent project currently streaming on Netflix.

Girl Walks into a Bar (2011)

Although Girl Walks into a Bar was shot in only eleven days and didn't have much of a budget, this short indie film boasts a surprisingly big-named cast. Besides Hartnett, the film features appearances by Danny DeVito, Aaron Tveit, Rosario Dawson, Alexis Bledel and a lot more.


The film begins with Nick (Zachary Quinto) waiting in a bar for someone named Driver (Carla Gugino), who he wants to hire to kill his wife. Sounds like the beginning of an action-packed thriller, right? Instead, the film takes a very VERY left turn. From a nudist ping pong club to an exotic dance palace, this film quickly travels through about a dozen Los Angeles bars as Nick tries to track down the money to hire his hit woman. By the time we reach the end of this odd and at times random journey, it's uncertain where we are or how we got here. But we do know that it was a pleasant trip!

Josh Hartnett plays detective Sam Salazar, one of many narratives that weaves throughout the film. Most of his screen time takes place toward the end of the movie (and I can't say much more without letting loose a million spoilers), but it's satisfying enough to make viewers wish that he was still a household name.


It's a shame that we won't be seeing Josh Hartnett in a red cape and blue tights anytime soon, and it's certainly a shame that we won't be seeing him reunited with his Pearl Harbor co-star Ben Affleck, who has been tapped to play the role of Batman in Batman vs. Superman. If Girl Walks into a Bar is any indication, though, Hartnett's still got it, and hopefully he's just waiting in the wings for the right role to present itself.

Sonia Halbach is the winner of the Studio@Gawker Netflix competition. She lives in New York City and moonlights as a young adult writer with an emphasis on 19th-century historical fantasy.


Photo Credit: Film Web

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