How Well Does Brendan Fraser Know His Love Interests? Oscar Nominee Guesses Co-Stars’ Lines From ‘The Whale,’ ‘Blast From the Past’ and More

Brendan Fraser’s massive popularity has helped play a role in the revitalization of the 54-year-old actor’s career. That includes Fraser’s first-ever Oscar nomination for best actor, via his towering performance in Darren Aronofsky’s “The Whale.”

For this week’s video episode of the Variety Awards Circuit Podcast, we sat down with Brendan Fraser to discuss “The Brenaissance” and what this past year has meant to him. We also play a game called “Whose Babe Is It Anyway?” — where Fraser guesses which of his former co-stars said a particular line.

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“The Whale” is a stark, dour examination of regret and addiction, wrapped into the script written by Samuel D. Hunter, who adapted his play of the same name. Distributed by A24, “The Whale” tells the story of Charlie, an obese gay man who reconnects with his estranged 17-year-old daughter Ellie (played by Sadie Sink) after leaving her and her mother for his younger male lover. In addition to Fraser’s nod for best actor, Hong Chau is nominated for best supporting actress.

As we wait to see whether Fraser’s name will be called from the Dolby Theatre stage on March 12, one point should not be lost: He has always been a gifted actor and a bonafide movie star.

Some of the star’s most memorable movies and roles have included the ’90s comedy “Encino Man” (1992), coming-of-age drama “School Ties” (1992) and infectious rom-coms like “Blast From the Past” (1998) and “Bedazzled” (2000). And then there was his adventurer Rick O’Connell of “The Mummy” franchise. “I love those movies,” he says. Fraser is even open to doing more. “I love popcorn movies. I’m not ruling anything out.”

Next up, Fraser will star alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, Jesse Plemons and Lily Gladstone in “The Killers of the Flower Moon,” directed by Martin Scorsese, which will premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

He is also set to star opposite Josh Brolin and Peter Dinklage in “Brothers” from Max Barbakow (“Palm Springs”). The plot has been kept under wraps, but Fraser reveals exclusively to Variety that it’s a “heist movie,” in which he plays a jailer. “There are jewels at stake, which have been mysteriously buried, possibly inside a cadaver. And fraternal twins Josh Brolin and Peter Dinklage are very funny together.”

Even though Warner Bros. yanked “Batgirl” from release, Fraser is not necessarily done with the DCEU. He says he’s open to coming back for more projects if asked by DC Studios heads James Gunn and Peter Sarfan. “I’m an actor,” says Fraser. “I want to work.”

Also on this episode, another Oscar-nominated icon, “Tár” star Cate Blanchett. But first, on the Awards Circuit Roundtable, we recap the SAG awards winners and set the stage as final Oscar voting gets underway.

Variety’s “Awards Circuit” podcast, produced by Michael Schneider, who also co-hosts with Clayton Davis, is your one-stop listen for lively conversations about the best in film and television. Each week “Awards Circuit” features interviews with top film and TV talent and creatives; discussions and debates about awards races and industry headlines; and much more. Subscribe via Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify or anywhere you download podcasts. New episodes post weekly.

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