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Bottle Shock charts a seismic shift in the global wine industry. It explodes the idea that fine wine was European—and specifically, French—territory.
The 2008 feature stars some familiar faces such as Alan Rickman, Dennis Farina and everyone’s favorite POTUS, Bill Pullman.
Pour a big glass of Napa Chardonnay and read on to see where these actors are now.
In Bottle Shock, Pullman plays real life winemaker Jim Barrett, whose Chardonnay won the 1976 Judgement of Paris wine tasting, putting California wines on the map.
Bill Pullman first made a name for himself as Lone Star, the ersatz Hans Solo in Mel Brooks’ Space Balls. Since then, he has appeared in notable films such as A League of Their Own, Independence Day, Lost Highway and Igby Goes Down.
Since his role as the senior Barrett, Pullman starred in the TV series Revelations and Torchwood, as well as playing a president in 1600 Penn. Perhaps it was this which prompted him to reprise his role as President Thomas J. Whitmore in the upcoming Independence Day sequel.
Freddy Rodriguez plays Gustavo in the film, a second generation vineyard worker with large aspirations but little funding.
By the time the Chicago-born actor was delivering speeches about the sanctity of Napa’s soil, he had already amassed a large and varied body of work, from his early roles in A Walk in the Clouds and Dead Presidents to 2007’s Planet Terror, not to mention memorable television work on Scrubs and Six Feet Under.
Since Bottle Shock, he has continued to work in television (Ugly Betty, Chaos, The Night Shift) as well as in dramatic film roles such as in Fort Bliss, about an army medic working to rebuild her life after returning home.
Since playing the younger Barrett in Bottle Shock, the 34-year old actor has put his energetic presence to good work in a number of action films.
The next year, he took on the role of Kirk in Star Trek (and its subsequent sequels), and in 2010, he stops bickering with Denzel Washington long enough to try to stop an unstoppable train in Ridley Scott’s Unstoppable).
Next up: a television version of the cult comedy classic, Wet Hot American Summer, as well as The Finest Hours, a thriller about a Coast Guard rescue during a blizzard.
Dennis Farina was a late bloomer, not finding acting until nearly 40. In his previous career as a cop, Farina was introduced to the director Michael Mann while serving as a consultant on the latter’s classic Thief (1981).
In the fives years between Bottle Shock and the actor’s death in 2013, he appeared in several projects, including the rom-com What Happens in Vegas and the star-studded (and Mann-directed) HBO series Luck.
Alan Rickman has a sneering drawl which is instantly distinctive, and yet, doesn’t stop him from playing a large array of roles. And despite his iconic performances as Hans Gruber in Die Hard and Severus Snape in the Harry Potter series, the 69-year old actor is loathe to be typecast as a villain. He’s a complicated guy.
As Steven Spurrier in in Bottle Shock, Rickman is the accidental force that sets the entire plot in motion, as he pushes for a blind taste test of the wines.
Since that film, he has reprised his role as Severus several times over, in addition to roles in 2013’s CBGB and as Ronald Reagan in The Butler. In 2012, he married his partner of nearly half a century in a private ceremony in New York, and in 2014, he directed and starred in A Little Chaos, a period romance about landscape artists at Versailles.
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Think you know the booze?
Let’s start with some basics.