November 29, 2022

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The Whale star Brendan Fraser apologizes to San Francisco

The Whale star Brendan Fraser apologizes to San Francisco

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Brendan Fraser was present last night at the screening of Darren Aronofsky’s new movie “The Whale” at the Mill Valley Film Festival, and he had some words of apology for the city San Francisco and on a larger scale Gulf area.

In an interview on the red carpet with SFGATE prior to the film, Fraser recounted an incident that occurred while filming the 1997 comedy “George of the Jungle.” Set and filmed in San Francisco, Movie It features an iconic scene that shows Fraser (as George) hanging from the top of the Bay Bridge (Fraser mistakenly pointed out the Golden Gate Bridge, but it’s been 25, so we’ll give him a break).

“I almost have an apology,” Fraser said.

“When we were doing ‘George of the Jungle,’ George went to rescue a parachutist entangled in the Golden Gate Bridge. That means Disney put a mannequin hanging from the canopy from the poles.”

“This has brought traffic to a standstill on both sides of the bridge,” he said. “My trailer was on the other side in a parking lot. I just remember watching the Golden Gate Bridge. There’s a fake parachute hanging from it. I was turning on the TV, and ‘Oprah’ was interrupted because there was a news report about helicopters saying the parachute dangles over the bridge. And I’ll go.” – Wait a minute, I’m looking at the helicopters and the TV – someone didn’t pull a pass, someone’s going to have trouble with the mayor’s office. I can’t help but apologize for that.”

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After an hour in front of the show, the Mill Valley Film Festival showed a highlight clip of Fraser’s career and presented him with a Lifetime Achievement Award for Acting. When he got a figurine, Fraser gave a kind thanks…and then set out to retell the same “George of the Woods” fable.

“One more quick thing – I just want to make a quick apology. Two years ago, I made a movie called ‘George of the Jungle’.” He continued describing the scene again, which led to roars of laughter from the audience.

“So, that’s what was said — my bad, it won’t happen again,” he added, turning to aged soccer mode Fraser.

Brendan Fraser in “The Whale”.

Courtesy of A24

Then the lights dimmed and the movie started. In The Whale, Fraser plays Charlie, a reclusive fat man who teaches online English courses with his webcam turned off. Charlie, immobile and just days away from dying of a heart condition, attempts to reconnect with his estranged daughter Ellie (played by Sadie Sink from Stranger Things). The film takes place entirely in Charlie’s cramped apartment, giving it the feel of an intimate theatrical (adapted from a stage production).

The film received a six-minute acclaim at the Venice Film Festival, and Fraser is likely an Academy Award nominee for his light, poignant portrayal of an obese man. After the film in a Q&A, Fraser listed the lengths he went to in order to portray the 600-pound character. Physically, it took him four hours each day to get him into the huge suit. On an emotional level, Fraser has worked with the Obesity Action Coalition, an eating disorder psychiatrist, and met 10 people who lived with varying levels of obesity.

On the verge of tears, Fraser recounted the experience.

“They had this in common… I noticed that early on in their stories, early on, there was a character, sometimes a parent, sometimes a father, who spoke to them vindictively as children about their body weight. The pattern that stayed with them for the rest of their lives.” Fraser then recalled an experience he had visited a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, where he read a plaque that read, “Really painful a vengeful letter.”

“I brought the two together and realized that words have consequences. What we say to each other, what we say to our children, and how we talk to each other, can hurt. A film that will never solve anyone’s problems, but can help influence culture, how we think, And how we feel, how we talk to each other… So I felt a moral obligation to give my all.”

More movies were shot in San Francisco