It's for a role in Darren Aronofsky's latest project called "The Whale"
Branden Fraser made a rare appearance at an event in New York looking nothing like his earlier self. The actor has put on a lot of weight off late but for a reason - he is set to star in a Darren Aronofsky-directed movie named The Whale, reports Deadline. Fraser was seen at the premiere of, No Sudden Move at the Tribeca Film Festival. Dressed in a dark suit and light blue shirt Fraser joined his No Sudden Move co-star, John Hamm smiling and posing for photographs. Aronofsky's latest directorial project is a screen adaption of a 2012 play by MacArthur-winning playwright Samuel D. Hunter of the same name. Staged on Broadway, it received critical acclaim and rave reviews and was the winner of many awards such as the Drama Desk Award, Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Play, and a GLAAD Media Award.
Hunter will adapt the play for the film. Speaking about the latest project Hunter said, “Adapting my play into a screenplay has been a real labor of love for me. 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." While in No Sudden Move, Fraser played a character named Jones who is a member of a group of criminals in 1954, The Whale will see him play the role of an obese and reclusive man. Fraser has put on considerable weight to portray the gay 600-pound character who is estranged from his daughter after he left his family for another man who later dies according to Rolling Stone.
Fraser's character named Charlie has a compulsive eating disorder that is aggravated when his partner dies. This is not the first time Fraser has played a gay character. He played the lead opposite British actor, Ian McKellen in the 1998 film, Gods and Monsters, about the last days of film director, James Whale. Fraser who used to be a huge star in the 90s and 2000s starred in films like Encino Man, The Mummy movies, Bedazzled, and the Oscar winner, Crash. He has been recently seen as Robotman/Cliff Steele in DC Universe’s Doom Patrol streamed on HBO Max. His other roles are other TV series like The Affair and Trust. For Aronofsky, this is the first film since his psychological thriller Mother that starred Jennifer Lawrence. Hunter said in a blog about the play, he developed The Whale while teaching at a university.
He added, "Though the story of The Whale is fundamentally a story of a father trying to reconnect with a daughter, he's doing so by trying to teach her how to write a good essay. But in teaching her how to write a good essay, he's trying to teach her how to think independently and how to relate to other people. Ultimately, he's teaching her how to have empathy...There are many elements that circle around the story in The Whale—morbid obesity, Mormonism, small-town America, etc.—but ultimately the play grew out of this struggle to teach independent thought and empathy."