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‘The Whale’ teaser trailer previews Brendan Fraser’s buzz-worthy performance

By Dan Heching, CNN

Brendan Fraser’s buzzy portrayal of a reclusive, obese teacher comes to life in the first trailer for “The Whale,” which premiered on Tuesday.

The new A24 drama, based on the Drama Desk Award-winning stageplay from Samuel D. Hunter, stars Fraser as Charlie, who is trying to reconnect with his estranged teenage daughter Ellie (Sadie Sink of “Stranger Things” fame).

The slow and brooding teaser clip starts with shots of a lived-in apartment, before Fraser’s character is seen looking out the kitchen window at a bird who alighted there.

“Do you ever get the feeling that people are incapable of not caring?” he asks in voice over, as shots of costar Hong Chau (“Downsizing”) and Sink are seen.

“People are amazing,” Charlie then says, while wearing an oxygen tube under his nose.

Fraser, whose film credits have thinned in recent years after he enjoyed action star-status in the early aughts thanks to the “Mummy” franchise, received a prolonged standing ovation for his turn in “The Whale” at the Venice Film Festival in September.

Video shared on social media of the six-minute ovation showed the actor looking teary-eyed as the audience applauded.

As reported by Variety, Fraser donned a prosthetic suit to play Charlie. He told reporters at the Venice festival that the performance, already touted as Oscar-worthy, required him to “learn how to move in a new way.”

“I developed muscles I did not know I had,” Fraser said at the time.

“The Whale,” directed by Darren Aronofsky, hits theaters on December 9.

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