Brendan Fraser did it. The ‘90s movie star made his big comeback with the lead role in drama movie The Whale, and it has taken him all the way to the stage of the Dolby Theatre as an Oscar winner.
In the new movie from Darren Aronofsky, Fraser plays a grief-stricken social recluse who has grown morbidly overweight in the wake of his partner’s death. Hong Chau, who scored an Oscars nomination for Best Supporting Actress, plays his friend and medical carer.
The movie has proved divisive, with some criticising its portrayal of obesity via the use of a fat suit. Some, however, praised the movie and those prosthetics won the Oscar for Best Makeup and Hairstyling.
Certainly, Fraser’s performance found emotional potency in the story, and few would complain about the irresistible comeback story of the actor’s return from the wilderness.
Taking to the stage of the Dolby Theater, with visible tears in his eyes, Fraser thanked director Aronofsky for providing him with “a creative lifeline”. He said the filmmaker, along with playwright Samuel D. Hunter, “laid your whale-sized hearts bare so that we could see into your souls like no one else could do”.
He added: “I started in this business 30 years ago. Things didn’t come easy to me but there was a facility that I didn’t appreciate at the time, until it stopped. I just want to say thank you for this acknowledgement. It couldn’t be done without my cast. It’s been like I’ve been on a diving expedition and the air on the line to the surface is being watched over by some people in my life like my sons.”
What a moment for Fraser, who richly deserves the recognition after everything he has been through. All we need now is for him to return to The Mummy. He has another classic adventure movie in him, we think,
You can find out how to watch The Whale in our guide, and we’ve also got the info you need on the Best Picture winner with how to watch Everything Everywhere All at Once. If you want to see another fantastic Oscar speech, arguably the best of all time, then you have to read our article on Joe Pesci’s iconic acceptance speech.