Steven Spielberg Had An Emotional Cast For Paul Dano As His Dad On The Fabelmans – CNET – ApparelGeek

The nailing of the molding was particularly important for Steven Spielbergthe last movie of The Fabelmans. The semi-autobiographical drama is heavily based on the legendary director’s early life growing up in post-World War II America and how he overcame a family divide to pursue his passion for filmmaking. Thanks to his replacement Sammy Fabelman (Gabriel LaBelle), he explored the influence of his creative-minded mother and methodical father on his life, especially through the chasm that separated them. It was essential then that Spielberg find actors who could capture not just their looks, but their mannerisms and mindsets as well. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, he clarified that no one played his father Arnold Spielberg quite similar to Paul Dano.

Considering his recent roles, Dano might seem odd playing Spielberg’s calm, kind, and upright father. He recently made waves on screen with one of the most unsettling portrayals of The Riddler in Matt Reevesit is The Batman. Even before that, he typically took on darker, more eccentric roles, ranging from there will be blood and Twelve years of slavery decidedly weirder Swiss army man. He’s no stranger to lighter roles, also starring in romantic comedy. ruby sparks among others. Spielberg approached Dano about the role of playing his father after hearing others in the industry talk about his temper when not in character.

Dano admitted he was beyond nervous to be asked to join Spielberg on a Zoom call for the film. Once The Fabelmans was detailed to him, and asked to play the role of the director’s father, he said, “My heart leaped. I could just see it.” During that first call with him, the director also knew immediately that he had made the right choice and was even moved to see how much the actor reminded him of his father, saying:

I certainly didn’t want to come to my first meeting with Paul and be a little too familiar. But there was something so reminiscent of my father. Ten minutes into the Zoom, I was suffocating. I held back my emotion.

Picture via Universal Pictures

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By all accounts, Dano went to great lengths to portray Spielberg’s father accurately. The two spent a lot of time getting to grips with Zoom, but the actor even immersed himself in Arnold’s world. While filming, he commissioned a crystal radio set to be assembled in order to get a feel for his love of electronics, which led to him becoming a skilled engineer. He’s always proven himself capable of tackling a wide range of roles throughout his award-winning career, but with the film’s importance to Spielberg, Dano seems to have gone the extra mile to better fit the role.

More details on The Fabelmans

Dano and LaBelle star in the film with michelle williams playing Mitzi Fabelman, based on Spielberg’s mother Lea Adler. The film also features Seth Rogen and Judd Hirsch with Jeannie berlin, Julia Butters, Robin Bartlettand Keeley Karsten making up the rest of the cast. Spielberg co-wrote and produced his passion project with the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and recently West Side Story collaborater Tony Kushner.

Watch Dano play Spielberg’s father in The Fabelmans when it hits select theaters on November 11 before enjoying a wider release on November 23 in time for Thanksgiving. Check out the trailer below.

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Steven Spielberg Had An Emotional Cast For Paul Dano As His Dad On The Fabelmans – CNET – ApparelGeek