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Hugh Jackman Loved The Son's Script So Much He Emailed The Director To Secure His Role

The 2020 psychological drama "The Father" — about a Welsh man living with dementia starring Anthony Hopkins and Olivia Colman — was an undeniable success for director Florian Zeller, who co-wrote the screenplay with Christopher Hampton. The film received a massive amount of award nominations, including six Oscar nods — Zeller and Hampton won for best adapted screenplay (per IMDb). Zeller's 2012 play "Le Père," which the film is based on, is part of a trilogy, with the follow up plays consisting of "Le Fils" and "The Mother." With the success of "The Father," it was only natural that Zeller continue forth in adapting the rest of his trilogy. Thus, "The Son" is slated to be released on November 25, 2022.

"The Son" — which was also directed by Zeller, with a screenplay by Zeller and Hampton — follows Peter Miller (Hugh Jackman), whose 17-year-old son Nicholas (Zen McGrath) comes to live with him a few years after his divorce to Nicholas's mother Kate (Laura Dern). Already consumed with a newborn baby, whom he has with his new wife Beth (Vanessa Kirby) and a time-consuming new job, Peter tries his best to do a good job continuing to raise Nicholas — and give him the kind of attention that Peter wished he had gotten from his own father Anthony (Anthony Hopkins).

Jackman has somewhat large shoes to fill with his leading role in "The Son," seeing as Hopkins won an Oscar for his leading performance in "The Father." But, for Jackman, the decision to take on the role all came down to the script, which he loved so much that he emailed Zeller to ensure that he landed the part.

Jackman knew he wanted to play the role right after reading the script

"The Son" star Hugh Jackman recently appeared on "Good Morning America" to promote the new film ahead of its release. During the discussion, Jackman was open about how much he wanted to play the part of Peter Miller — even confessing that he went the extra mile to make sure he was chosen over other actors in the running.

Jackman said, "I read the script and knew I had to do it. I had also heard that a couple of other actors were being talked about, so I had this awkward moment where I emailed the director because I felt an urgency to play the part ... It's a rare thing to happen; it's one you look for." Jackman continued and admitted that he wrote the director to say that if he didn't already have someone at the top of his mind, then he would love to take on the part.

The actor then explained that he was drawn to the universal nature of the story, which sees a family struggling with the son's mental health. On the topic of mental health, Jackman noted that it has only become more prominent during the pandemic. Advocating for the importance of mental health and working past the shame that is so frequently associated with it, Jackman concluded, "This story is one that needs to be told ... Hopefully the movie will spark those conversations [about mental health awareness] and get some real help to people who need it because a lot of people are worrying alone and we shouldn't do that."