After an upcoming turn as Russ Meyer and a reprise of his role in Zoolander 2, Will Ferrell will be making the logical move of replacing Patrick Dempsey in the latest film from Swedish arthouse favorite Lasse Hallström. Tom’s Dad will tell the story of a nightclub performer who reconnects with his estranged preteen son in the ’60s. While the film is being described as a comedy, it seems like a safe bet that we’ll be seeing the quiet, thoughtful Ferrell of Stranger Than Fiction and Everything Must Go rather than the broader, sillier Ferrell of pretty much 0everything else.
If Ferrell is looking to stretch himself as an actor, Hallström is a good choice—his actors have turned in Oscar-nominated performances in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? (Leonardo DiCaprio), The Cider House Rules (Michael Caine), and Chocolat (Juliette Binoche). Could this be Will Ferrel’s Oscar turn? If not, he’ll always have Ron Burgundy’s local Emmy.