"The Whale" Brings Brendan Fraser Back to Glory
by FARUK IMAMOVIC | VIEW 210
In a year filled with incredible performances from first-time nominees, Brendan Fraser's portrayal of a morbidly obese teacher in "The Whale" stood out among the crowd and earned him the coveted Academy Award for Best Actor.
A Transcendent Performance
Fraser was one of five actors nominated in the category for the first time, competing against Austin Butler in "Elvis", Colin Farrell in "The Banshees of Inisherin", Paul Mescal in "Aftersun", and Bill Nighy in "Living".
When Fraser took the stage to accept his award, he was overcome with emotion and exclaimed, "So this is what the multiverse looks like!" He went on to pay tribute to the film's director, Darren Aronofsky, and writer Samuel Hunter, saying, "You laid your whale-sized hearts bare so we could see into your souls."
A Career Resurgence
Fraser rose to fame in the early 1990s with his comedic performance in "Encino Man" and his dramatic turn in "School Ties".
He solidified his place in Hollywood with his roles in the "George of the Jungle" trilogy and "The Mummy". He went on to star in films such as "Gods and Monsters", "The Quiet American", and "Crash", but then seemingly disappeared from the public eye for several years as he dealt with a series of personal issues, including divorce, the death of his mother, health problems, and an alleged s*xual assault.
In 2018, Fraser revealed that he had been touched inappropriately by Philip Berk, head of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), in 2003. "I felt ill," the actor said. "I felt like a little kid. I felt like there was a ball in his throat.
I thought I was going to cry." This incident, along with his other personal struggles, forced Fraser to step back from the public eye. However, with his incredible performance in "The Whale", Fraser has returned to his former glory.
His portrayal earned him standing ovations at the Venice and Toronto Film Festivals, as well as a Screen Actors Guild Award. His performance has been widely praised as one of the most powerful of the year and possibly the best of his career.
After being battered and abused by the industry and blacklisted after being s*xually assaulted, Brendan Fraser finally got the highest honor he could in Hollywood. Brendan deserves this Oscar and he deserves an apology from so many.
So fucking happy for him. pic.twitter.com/Q1KgBGmuUk — Max ? (@MaxMaaxMaaax) March 13, 2023
A Heartfelt Thank You
In his acceptance speech, Fraser also took the time to reflect on his 30-year career in the film industry, saying, "Things didn't come easily to me but there was a facility I didn't appreciate at the time until it stopped." He ended his speech by thanking his sons and his partner, Jeanne Moore, who he referred to as his "first friend".
"The Whale" has brought Brendan Fraser back to the forefront of Hollywood and solidified his place as one of the greatest actors of his generation.