Among the list of A-list comics who occasionally turn to dramas, Adam Sandler is not quite up there with the likes of Robin Williams and Jim Carrey. Those actors arguably did finer jobs with serious roles than they did mugging for the camera (watch Good Will Hunting and The Truman Show for proof). But Adam Sandler has done terrific work as the dramatic anchor of Spanglish and Reign Over Me. Plus, his quixotic change of pace in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love is a career highlight.
Now, the actor may be turning back to dramas with a pinch of light comedy, as he is in talks to play the lead in The Cobbler, from indie darling Thomas McCarthy, writer/director of Win Win and The Station Agent. The role Sandler would play is of a shoe repairman who has the ability to, literally, walk a mile in other people’s shoes as he achieves the metaphysical ability to “step” into their lives. This magical realism seems like it could fit Sandler well, unless McCarthy goes the lowbrow, slapstick route and has him don disguises and try out thick accents. I’m doubtful about that, though.
Since Grown Ups 2, Jack and Jill and That’s My Boy were a putrid cinematic trifecta, it is a good call for Sandler to rekindle his interest in dramas from writer/directors who can mould strong performances from funny actors (such as Bobby Cannavale and Thomas Haden Church). Tom McCarthy’s films have a great balance of emotional weight and laugh-out-loud comedy, which should tailor to Sandler’s talents quite nicely.
A natural comedic and dramatic presence like Sandler should work well with a writer/director known best for bringing fascinating characters to life. Plus, I’d rather sit through a finely-acted Tom McCarthy drama than five minutes of anything Adam Sandler’s concocted in the past five years.
Source: First Showing