The Rock also celebrated Fraser on social media, saying video of the touching moment “makes me so happy.”
Brendan Fraser’s big comeback is officially in full swing — and he got the standing ovation to prove it!
Over the weekend, his new film “The Whale” premiered at the Venice Film Festival, instantly earning the actor accolades from critics and early Oscar buzz.
The actor stars in the Darren Aronofsky film as a reclusive, 600-pound writing instructor struggling to reconnect with his daughter while also suffering from a compulsive eating disorder. The movie is based on the 2012 Samuel D. Hunter play of the same name, with Hunter also developing the screenplay.
After the movie premiered, the film earned a 6-minute standing ovation from the crowd in attendance — due, in large part, to Fraser’s performance in it. In fact, at one point, Fraser was reportedly preparing to exit the theater, but the crowd’s applause convinced him to stay even longer.
The actor was visibly emotional in video shared by Variety reporter Ramin Setoodeh, who said the actor “sobbed” as his costars joined in on the applause.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson retweeted Setoodeh’s video and celebrated Fraser — his “Mummy Returns” costar — further.
“Man this makes me so happy to see this beautiful ovation for Brendan,” tweeted Johnson. “He supported me coming into his Mummy Returns franchise for my first ever role, which kicked off my Hollywood career. Rooting for all your success brother and congrats to my bud Darren Aronofsky.”
To portray Charlie, an online English teacher with severe obesity, Fraser underwent a prosthetic and makeup process that took up to six hours to apply. The prosthetics, created by Adrien Morot with a 3D printer, at times weighed up to 300 pounds.
Fraser told Vanity Fair that when he first laid eyes on the prosthetic suit, hung on a mannequin, he was taken aback: “It was that beautiful and that arresting.”
When wearing the suit Fraser’s mobility was severely limited, requiring him to be aided with sitting, moving and standing up. Fraser said the suit was “cumbersome, not exactly comfortable,” and described it as “almost like a straight jacket.” But noted its technical detail down to it being “airbrushed by hand, to look identical as would human skin, right down to the hand-punched hair.”
He also made sure to be as accurate and sensitive as possible, working with the Obesity Action Coalition. “I learned quickly that it takes an incredibly strong person inside that body to be that person,” he said of the experience. “That seemed fitting and poetic and practical to me, all at once.”
Speaking of his suit, Fraser said, “I looked at other body suits that had been used in comedies over the years, usually for a one-note joke.”
“Whether intended or not, the joke is, it defies gravity. This was not that,” he said.
“The Whale” also stars Sadie Sink, Hong Chau, Samantha Morton and Ty Simpkins and hits theaters December 9.