Most unlikely costar:
 
Al Pacino's fingernail fungus in "Insomnia"

 

 

 

 Sleepless in Alaska, Al Pacino feels he's never alone.

 A close look at his brown and fragile fingernails...

 ...reveals the location of his constant companions.
 
In "Insomnia," veteran actor Al Pacino plays a guilt ridden cop in an Alaskan summer. He can't sleep--the sun barely sets and he can't shake the feeling that he's got unseen company. In a way, he isn't alone. For his last few films, close-up shots of Pacino's fingers show some nails with dark stains and lifting of the nail tips. This appearance is classic for nail infection with fungus. Fungus, the same critter that can cause "athelete's foot" and "jock itch," can also set up residence in finger and toe nails. This creepy critter is constantly closer to Pacino than any celebrity stalker could conceive. No wonder he can't sleep.
 
Fortunately, ridding patients of this pesky pest can be simpler than getting a restraining order or hiring a slew of new body guards. While topical anti-fungal creams can clear this organism from the skin, usually anti-fungal pills like Sporonox or Lamisil are the only way to cleanse the nails. They can either be taken daily for 2-3 months, or may work at higher doses taken a week at a time (pulse-dosing). Though rare, a potential side effect of these medicines is liver inflammation, which may be why Pacino has opted not to treat. Or maybe he uses it to gain sympathy from friendly co-stars like Hilary Swank (left). Ultimately, since fungal nail infection is not life threatening, it's nothing to lose sleep over.
 
 
Unlikely co-star, Runner up:
Jude Law's faux fingernail fungus in "Road to Perdition."


 
 

 

 


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