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How Brendan Fraser Was Cast In His Comeback Movie The Whale

Darren Aronofsky, who directed The Whale, tells how actor Brendan Fraser earned the lead role in the film, which many are calling his comeback.


The whale Director Darren Aronofsky reveals how lead actor Brendan Fraser got the part. Fraser’s career began with the actor playing bumbling leads in quirky comedies such as: Encino Man, George of the Jungle, and Dudley Doe-Right. When he was cast in 1999 as Rick O’Connell the mummy, that would spawn a trilogy, Fraser’s career boomed. In addition to his fan-favorite role in the fantasy action-adventure series, he starred in highbrow dramas such as The silent american and Crash. Despite proving his abilities as an actor in multiple genres, Fraser largely disappeared from starring roles for nearly a decade due to multiple setbacks in his personal and professional life.

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Fraser has played supporting and television roles in recent years and played Cliff Steele in Doom Patrol since 2019 and Doug Jones in the 2021 Steven Soderbergh movie No sudden move. He’s now back as the lead in the Darren Aronofsky-directed movie The whale, in which Fraser plays Charlie, a 600-pound English teacher who tries to make contact with his estranged daughter (Sadie Sink) after he leaves her and her mother. Despite sparking controversy around fat phobia, Fraser has received critical acclaim for his performance and received standing ovations at this year’s Venice, Toronto and New York film festivals.

Related: How Brendan Fraser Nearly Died Inside the Mummy (For Real)

While speaking with Variety, Aronofsky describes his journey in casting Fraser for the lead role. According to the director, he spent ten years adapting the original source material (Samuel D. Hunter’s play of the same name) and meeting actors for the part. The search was daunting for the director, who wasn’t sure if he would find his star until he saw a trailer for one of Fraser’s films – a “low-budget Brazilian film” (possibly referring to 2006’s) Journey to the end of the night) — and decided Fraser was the missing piece of the film. Check out what Aronofsky had to say about casting his star below:

“As soon as he left my office after our first meeting, I felt it. I knew he could play someone most people would reject, but within five minutes they started to feel something for him. Then, within 20 minutes, they start to fall in love with the character because there’s just something about Brendan. Soon he starts to break your heart.”

The Whale Is Just the Beginning for Brendan Fraser’s Comeback

The vulnerability and humanity Fraser exudes is part of the reason the actor has been the subject of Oscar buzz ever since. The whalepremiere. Since the film is his first lead role in a feature film in ten years, and he has several projects lined up since then, many have watched it The whale as Fraser’s triumphant comeback to Hollywood. It’s true that Fraser has two high-profile movies in the pipeline, starring alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon, set for release in 2023, and starring Josh Brolin and Peter Dinklage in Max Barbakow’s brothers. Fraser would also star in the unreleased DC movie batgirl as the villain, Firefly.

Fraser has since seen an outpouring of appreciation and support across social media The whale premiere, which is likely to increase when the film hits theaters in December. Based on the hype that Fraser’s performance in The whale has generated, with critics praising his gut-wrenching, empathetic and nuanced performance, it seems likely he will see some nominations come in the award season. Such an accolade would boost his resurgent career, create opportunities for more leadership roles down the line and bring about a real comeback for Fraser.

Next: Why The Whale Is Controversial Despite Brendan Fraser’s Comeback

Source: Variety

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