Recently, the trailer and poster for Amazon Studios’ new feature, “Beautiful Boy,” was dropped. The poster is in a black-and-white vintage tone, mimicking the look of classic movie posters like “Annie Hall” and “Rocky.” At first glance, the poster’s image looks like it could be anyone’s old family photo, But to a fan of the modern age, two very exciting and familiar faces beam back at you: Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet.
You may be surprised by the strange pairing, imagining Michael Scott from “The Office” with that kid from “Call Me by Your Name.” But Carell’s career has actually taken a turn from comedy — when he’s not doing “Despicable Me” movies, that is.
Last year, he got a Golden Globe nomination for “Battle of the Sexes,” in which he portrayed the professional tennis player, Bobby Riggs. As Carrell inches his career in a more serious direction, it’s possible to ask yourself: Will “Beautiful Boy” be his magnum opus?
The film’s other star, Timothée Chalamet, is best known for his dramatic roles, or really, one dramatic role. His portrayal of Elio in “Call Me by Your Name” — the story of a young man infatuated with his father’s older, male student — brought him to a harmony of status in the film world as the indie darling, certified heartthrob and hot, new up-and-comer. After losing out on the Oscar to Gary Oldman’s Winston Churchill, which was essentially a given, Chalamet’s band of fangirls and stans were devastated.
“Beautiful Boy” tells the true story of David (Carell) and Nic Sheff (Chalamet) based on their autobiographies. David is a journalist and a father, whose oldest son, Nic, is a meth addict. The story chronicles the ups and downs of their relationship and David’s difficulty in striking a balance between his love for his son and his need to protect himself and his other children. The film also stars Maura Tierney and Amy Ryan (hello, Holly and Michael!) as Sheff’s wife and ex-wife, respectively.
The trailer is already a tear-jerker, opening with the two men sitting across from each other in a diner, Carell pleading with his son for them to have a normal lunch. In the trailer, the pair have already gotten into an argument, with Chalamet’s character on the verge of tears and stating, “I didn’t want it to go like this,” while Carell looks on, devastated.
As the trailer continues, the audience discovers that Nic goes missing, but it’s obvious that the trailer is more focused on the father-son relationship; this film seems more of a character study than a plot-driven drama.
By the end of the trailer, Carell’s voice is ringing out over shots of him and Chalamet hugging: “You know how much I love you? I love you more than everything.”
Will “Beautiful Boy” be the ultimate recognition for these well-known and widely loved actors? You’ll just have to wait until October.