How Sean Baker chose Simon Rex [EXCLUSIVE]
Screen Rant is happy to share an exclusive clip from Red Rocket’s upcoming home release of how director Sean Baker cast Simon Rex in the film.
Screen Rant has an exclusive clip of the upcoming home entertainment release from red rocket, in which director Sean Baker and star Simon Rex discuss what happened to Rex’s casting in the film. The critically acclaimed independent film premiered at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival and went on to receive numerous nominations and wins.
red rocket centers on Mikey Saber (Rex), a charismatic hustler, operative, and con man who returns home to his small town in Texas after burning bridges and setting himself on fire all over Los Angeles. However, Mikey quickly learns that no one in his old stomping ground really wants him back. When he meets a teenage girl (Suzanna Son, in her feature debut), who works at the local donut shop, he sees her ticket to the big time. Baker, who also co-wrote the film, is best known for his writing and directing duties on the critically acclaimed films. The Florida Project, featuring Willem Dafoe, and Mandarin.
In this exclusive clip from the upcoming home entertainment release of red rocket, Rex recounts receiving a call from a friend who said that Baker wanted to call Rex, asking if it was okay to give him his number. When they spoke, Baker asked Rex to send an audition tape via his iPhone based on a paragraph from the film’s opening scene. Baker was impressed with the impromptu audition and told Rex he had to be in Texas in three days. The clip also features Baker discussing his reason for seeking out Rex for the role, as well as the direction he gave the actor to portray Mikey’s character. Watch the video below:
Mikey’s role was a bit of a gamble for Rex and Baker. Rex was best known for his work in comedies, notably in three of horror movie movies. He has appeared in numerous television projects, including a regular role in the Amanda Bynes/Jennie Garth comedy What I like about you. He also developed a rap persona, Dirt Nasty, releasing several solo albums and co-founding the hip-hop comedy group Three Loco. Baker states that he knew Rex had it in him to play a dramatic role like Mikey.
It seems that the bet has succeeded. Rex won best actor awards from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and the Independent Spirit Awards. It was also nominated for Best Lead Performance at the Gotham Awards and won the Virtuoso Award at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. red rocket has also won numerous other awards, and the National Board of Review has listed it among the ten best films of 2021.
Next: Explanation of the end of the Florida project
red rocket will be available on Blu-ray™ and DVD on March 15, 2022.
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