Sam Rockwell’s inability to secure an Oscar nomination for a career filled with hilarious and dazzling turns in films like Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, Moon and The Way, Way Back has not stopped the actor from attracting a large fanbase and much love from the independent film community. In Park City to promote Lynn Shelton’s new comedy-drama Laggies, Rockwell is now starting to drum up support for The Eel, which he will star in for writer/director Roberto Bentivegna, whose script appeared on the 2012 Black List.
The Eel should be a darker turn for Rockwell, who will play an escaped convict drawn back into a life of crime when a corrupt sheriff kidnaps the heiress to an oil fortune. As Kevin Walsh, one of The Eel‘s producers, told Deadline, Rockwell’s role “of a criminal on the run… reminded us of Drive and Cool Hand Luke.”
Bentivegna is currently at Sundance as well, looking for financiers to help fund the film. With Rockwell’s name attached though, the odds that this one will get enough support to land a berth at 2015’s Sundance Film Festival are getting better and better.
The drama will also reunite Rockwell with Nat Faxon and Jim Rash (acting as producers), the writing and directing team behind The Way, Way Back, one of last summer’s biggest indie hits and a film that brought Rockwell awards buzz for his turn as suave water park manager Owen.
It may be early days but I’m already excited about The Eel. It sounds promising and seeing as Bentivegna began his career winning the Alfred P. Sloan screenwriting prize at Columbia University, he should have the chops to pull it off. And if not, Sam Rockwell’s performance should be enough reason to check this one out when it hits theatres.
Source: First Showing