When I think of Steve Carell, I think of Despicable Me and The Office and the “Produce Pete” segment on The Daily Show; I do not think of a menacing sociopath or possible murderer. But all the buzz on Carell’s latest performance in the upcoming drama Foxcatcher is that he’s one terrifying man. Having watched the latest trailer for the film, I can certainly see where the buzz comes from.
Carell plays John du Pont, a millionaire with a passion for amateur sports. Du Pont runs Foxcatcher Farms, where he helps to train wrestlers for the US Olympics Team. This ultimately leads to tragedy once du Pont’s friend Dave Shultz (Mark Ruffalo) and his brother Mark (Channing Tatum) join up with Foxcatcher Farms as they prepare for another Olympic bid. Du Pont’s increasingly erratic behavior and obsessions begin to take a toll on the relationships between the three men, eventually resulting in violence and murder.
The latest trailer for Foxcatcher puts Steve Carell front and center for the entirety of its one minute run-time. Based just on this brief glimpse, it’s quite a performance: full of quiet menace and even obsession, Carell both looks and acts in a part that’s a far cry from the genial buffoon we typically see in the actor’s roles. The make-up work they’ve done on him serve to mask and wash-out his features, and that nice, knowing smile has been replaced with a grimace that hints at the slow encroachment of madness. I have a feeling that Foxcatcher will prove that Carell is a strong dramatic actor, if we did not know it already.
Foxcatcher will come to theaters on November 14. You can check out the latest trailer below and see what you think of Carell’s performance.