×
Back to IndieWire

‘The Whale’ First Look: Brendan Fraser Is Unrecognizable as 600-lb. Man in Darren Aronofsky’s Venice Pick

Fraser stars as a recluse English teacher looking to reconnect with his daughter (Sadie Sink) in the Venice-bound feature.

The Whale, Brendan Fraser

“The Whale”

A24

Brendan Fraser has undergone a full transformation for Darren Aronofsky’s latest drama.

The R-rated, A24 feature film, directed by Aronofsky and based on the play penned by Samuel D. Hunter, is set to premiere at the 2022 Venice Film Festival. Fraser plays a reclusive English teacher who suffers from severe obesity while trying to reconnect with his estranged teenage daughter (Sadie Sink) for one last chance at redemption.

Hong Chau, Ty Simpkins, and Samantha Morton also star.

“Adapting my play into a screenplay has been a real labor of love for me,” screenwriter Hunter said in a statement to Deadline last year. “This story is deeply personal and I’m very thankful it will have the chance to reach a wider audience. I’ve been a fan of Darren’s ever since I saw ‘Requiem for a Dream’ when I was a college freshman writing my first plays, and I’m so grateful that he’s bringing his singular talent and vision to this film.”

The 2012 production of “The Whale” won several honors, including “the Drama Desk Award, the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Play, and a GLAAD Media Award, plus Drama League and Outer Critics Circle nominations for Best Play,” per Deadline.

“The Whale” is director Aronofsky’s first film since 2017’s “Mother!,” reuniting with longtime cinematographer Matthew Libatique who also led Olivia Wilde’s fellow Venice premiere “Don’t Worry Darling.”

The first look photo shows Fraser looking distraught and staring into the distance while wearing prosthetics.

“It’s gonna be like something you haven’t seen before,” the actor told Unilad in 2021. “That’s really all I can tell you. The wardrobe and costume was extensive, seamless, cumbersome. This is certainly far removed from anything I’ve ever done but not to be coy. I do know it’s going to make a lasting impression.”

Aside from “The Whale,” Fraser is also set to star in Martin Scorsese’s Apple Original Western film “Killers of the Flower Moon.” Fraser will additionally appear as Firefly in “Batgirl” on HBO Max.

A24 has a trio of films at the 79th Venice Film Festival including Ti West’s “X” prequel, “Pearl,” and Joanna Hogg’s “The Eternal Daughter” starring Tilda Swinton.

Check out the first look at “The Whale” below.

“The Whale” does not yet have a release date.

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Film and tagged , , ,


Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox