The praise for Brendan Fraser and his acting comeback could and should never stop (if it were up to me). Fraser — who was out of the spotlight for many years — has returned to acting and is cleaning up this award season with several big nominations for his role in the critically acclaimed A24 film, The Whale.
The cherry on top of this celebratory season for the 54-year-old actor may just be his Academy Award nomination for the same film.
While the nomination is nothing to balk at, Fraser told Extra that all he really cares about is his kids and making them proud.
If his sons’ sweet gesture of love towards their dad after his Oscar nomination are any indication, he is definitely living up to the task.
When Extra correspondent Melvin Robert asked Fraser, “What went through your mind when you got the news?”
Brendan said, “Astonishment and surprise, because my kids surprised me with cake and balloons. The sneaked into the house, they had a plan. That and the feeling that sharing that moment with my loved ones is now a core memory of mine.”
Fraser shares sons — Griffin, 20, Holden, 18, and Leland, 16 — with ex-wife, Afton Smith.
When asked further why this sudden career revival means so much to him, Fraser explained that becoming a father truly put things into perspective.
“I think it’s a fulfillment of an aspiration that I would have never even thought to dare to have allowed, let alone to myself, until I came into my 50s and I looked at my life, who I am, what I know about love from my kids and it gives it a context now,” he said.
“I love my job — it is the best one in the world, it also has proven to be something that I can do to help reach others in a way that’s meaningful that has gratitude, that has taught me some humility, that’s why.”
Fraser recently walked the red carpet with two of his sons —Leland and Holden — at the film premiere of The Whale. Holden posted about their family affair, captioning a photo of the trio, “Boys night out” on his Instagram stories.
Fraser’s eldest son, Griffin was not at the movie opening. However, he did play a major role in his dad’s decision to be a part of The Whale.
While being interviewed by Freddie Prince Jr. for Interview Mag in November 2022, the actor revealed that his role in The Whale was inspired by his eldest son.
“My oldest son Griffin has special needs. He’s autistic. He just turned 20. He’s a big kid. He’s six foot five. He’s got big hands and feet, a big body. I understand intimately what it is to be close to a person who lives with obesity.”
“And because of the beauty of his spectrum — call it a disorder if you will, I disagree with you — he knows nothing of irony,” he added. “He doesn’t know what cynicism is. You can’t insult him. He can’t insult you. He’s the happiest person and is, in my life and many others, also the manifestation of love. Being with my kids and their mom and our family has given me such love that if ever I needed to hold something of value up to try and translate that to what was important to Charlie, I didn’t have to look far.”
Prinze, who praised Fraser’s performance in the film, shared with the actor just how much his role in The Whale meant to him.
“I told you [the movie] made me want to be a better father. A better husband. A better friend. It forces you to look inside yourself. You also said something about how whatever you bring into that theater as an audience member, however, you’re programmed to receive information, [and] this movie challenges that in a very gentle way,” Prinze said.
Good luck to Brendan with his nomination, and here’s hoping for more roles — and more surprise cakes — for the comeback actor in the future.