A lot of people did a double take when longtime indie stalwart Mark Ruffalo signed on to play The Hulk in “The Avengers” last year. Had the thespian turned his back on his indie roots? Was this a new, more mainstream geared Ruffalo that was emerging? Nah, didn’t think so. Once Ruffalo is done going green this summer, he’ll slide back into a smaller pic and one that once again finds the actor dipping his toes in new water.
Variety reports that Ruffalo will portray jazz pianist Joe Albany in the biopic “Low Down.” Based on his daughter Amy Albany‘s memoir “Low Down: Junk, Jazz, and Other Fairy Tales From Childhood,” the film will be told from the perspective of a child as she watches her father navigate the jazz scene of the ’60 and ’70s while struggling with drug addiction. While Albany might not be a household name his talent allowed him to play alongside giants like Benny Carter, Charlie Parker and Miles Davis. He was also the subject of a 1980 documentary “Joe Albany … A Jazz Life,” excerpts of which you can watch below.
Obviously, Ruffalo’s summer will be tied up filming “The Avengers,” so production on the film will begin at the end of the year. Commercial director Jeff Preiss, who is also a partner at Epoch Films who are producing the pic with Bona Fide, will be making his feature directorial debut.