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Actor Brendan Fraser joined A24 Films’ The Whale in a performance that’s unlike anything he’s done previously. The film required him to undergo a physical transformation into a character that looks quite different from himself. However, the initial first-look photo from The Whale has audiences wondering if Fraser gained weight for the role or if he’s wearing a lot of prosthetics.

Brendan Fraser plays Charlie in ‘The Whale’

'The Whale' Brendan Fraser as Charlie looking straight ahead with bottles blurred out in the background
Brendan Fraser as Charlie | A24 Films

The Whale tells the story of a 600-pound middle-aged man named Charlie (Fraser), who is estranged from his 17-year-old daughter, Ellie (Sadie Sink). Their relationship drifted after he left the family to pursue a life with a same-sex lover, who later died. As a result, Charlie began to binge-eat out of pain and guilt.

Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky steps behind the camera with a screenplay written by Samuel D. Hunter. The full cast includes Fraser, Sink, Hong Chau, Samantha Morton, Ty Simpkins, and Sathya Sridharan.

Brendan Fraser is wearing prosthetics for weight gain

In a profile interview with Newsweek, Fraser confirmed that he does wear prosthetics in The Whale. He already finished filming at the time, but he knew the impact that the feature film would likely have.

“The wardrobe and costume was extensive, seamless, cumbersome,” Fraser said. “This is certainly far removed from anything I’ve ever done but not to be coy, I haven’t seen any of it yet, but I do know it’s going to make a lasting impression.”

Social media is divided regarding The Whale hiring Fraser over an actor who wouldn’t require the use of prosthetics. Nevertheless, it’s clear that the actor is attracting a lot of attention to the project, who once starred in hit movies, such as The Mummy and Crash.

‘The Whale’ has its world premiere at the 2022 Venice Film Festival


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A24’s The Whale will have its world premiere at the 2022 Venice Film Festival in competition. The festival runs from Aug. 31 until Sept. 10, so audiences around the world won’t have to wait too long for initial reactions to hit the Internet.

Some early buzz indicates that The Whale might earn Fraser his first Oscar nomination. It wouldn’t be the first time an actor earned a golden statue under his direction, as Natalie Portman won an Oscar for her fearless performance in Black Swan.

The Whale could offer an excellent opportunity for Fraser that will allow audiences to see him in an entirely different light. However, it’s clear that he did it under a lot of makeup and prosthetics.

A24 Films is bringing another two movies to the 2022 Venice Film Festival. This is rather surprising, given that the studio generally didn’t see an interest in premiering their titles at this destination in previous years. However, A24 made the decision to bring a few of their highly-anticipated titles to Venice. Joanna Hogg’s The Eternal Daughter and Ti West’s horror prequel Pearl will also make their world premiere.