In one of the sweetest and most emotional moments of the Venice Film Festival so far, Brendan Fraser received an outpouring of love in the form of a standing ovation after the world premiere of his latest film The Whale. The film, based on a Samuel D. Hunter play, was directed by Darren Aronofsky and features Fraser as Charlie, a morbidly obese man looking to reconnect with his estranged daughter (Stranger Things’ Sadie Sink) before his death.

Fraser has been enjoying a huge comeback after years of relative obscurity through the 2010s, which was in part due to retaliation he received when he was allegedly sexually assaulted by the former head of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Fraser’s performance has been heralded as a revelation in The Whale with critics at the screening generally agreeing that he brings a warmth and tenderness to Charlie that elevates the film.

In a video from right after the screening, we see the crowd already standing and applauding with the focus being on the cast and crew of The Whale. Visible in the crowd is cast like Fraser and Sink, director Aronofsky, who seems to encourage Fraser to stand centrally during the applause, as well as the original writer of the play the film is based on, Sam Hunter.

We then get to see Fraser take a bow to uproarious cheers from the crowd. The actor is clearly beaming with pride, and becomes seemingly emotional as the applause crescendoes after his bow. He even causes laughter in the crowd by doing a goofy kicking motion, and is also seen mouthing “thank you.” The ovation reportedly lasted about six minutes.


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The Whale will be opening in theaters on December 9.

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