O’Shea Jackson Jr. only had a tweet. put on the star Cocaine Bearone of the most talked about movies of 2023.
The film, directed and co-produced by Elizabeth Banks, is loosely based on a true story from 1985 when an American black bear ate part of a haul of cocaine dropped by drug smugglers in the Tennessee desert. It has already grossed $2 million in previews and looks set for an opening weekend of around $15 million.
“I love that the studio is so behind the film that it is inevitable. I was to see it everywhere,” he said enthusiastically. “I’ve seen it on apps I’m on, on billboards, and even on an ad for it during the Super Bowl. It was the first time I’ve had a Super Bowl ad for a movie I’ve made.”
“Present online of Cocaine Bear it’s something, as an actor, as a creator, that’s what you want. You want a movie to go viral, to have crazy moments, to be talked about, and hashtags and what not. I’m really happy with how people are getting the news that there’s a movie about a bear on cocaine,” Jackson added.
Cocaine Beardirected and co-produced by Elizabeth Banks, loosely based on a true story from 1985 when an American black bear ate part of a haul of cocaine dropped by drug smugglers in the Tennessee desert.
“I heard about it through a tweet,” he explained. “I saw that Elizabeth got the rights, I clicked on it, and it piqued my interest. And I was like, ‘Yo, there’s no way they’re letting this movie happen,’ but I tweeted, ‘Take my money now,’ or something like that, just praising the movie. Elizabeth saw it and was like, ‘We’ve got to get O’Shea.’ I already had her.”
Some may be surprised that Banks is the bellwether, but Jackson Jr. is none of them.
“I was already a fan of Elizabeth Banks because of her comedic roles. She makes me laugh, so I was already excited to work with her,” Jackson said. “When I found out she was directing, it was like, ‘She knows what this wants. She’s a player-coach who knows what to be in your shoes and what not to be. ask a director to tell her. And she is. able to work with you in a very engaging way. I love Elizabeth. I’ll work with her again, whatever she wants.”
“She will always be with me in the corner praising her.”
In addition to Jackson Jr., Cocaine Bear an ensemble cast includes Keri Russell, Alden Ehrenreich, Brooklynn Prince, Margo Martindale, Matthew Rhys, and, in one of his last performances before his death, Ray Liotta.
With solid reviews and the film becoming a pop phenomenon in its own right, the role of Daveed, one of the men tasked with tracking down the missing carrier, is another hit for Jackson Jr. from drug kingship Liotta. nwa biography, Straight Out of Compton.
“You have to have balance in your work,” he mused. “After Straight Out of Compton, I told my team that we have to make sure that every film we do, the next one has to be the opposite of the last one. We couldn’t let people box me in and say I’m a certain type of actor. “
Jackson continued, “We went from an Oscar-nominated film to the indie way with Ingrid goes Westthen to act with Of the Thievesthen Godzilla: King of the Monstersthen back to the dramatic with Just Mercy. I always tried to dance around. “
Cocaine Bearis on track to become a bona fide hit at the box office, is poised to join the exclusive club of “cult classic” films finding longevity well beyond their original theatrical run, and Jackson Jr. totally comfortable with that.
“Movies are popcorn, but then there’s cinema, as they say, and I want to be serious in both. It’s always fun to have a movie that everyone can’t stop talking about,” explained the actor, beaming. “Film enthusiasts, their number is a little less than those who want to have fun at the movies, but I love both sides. I am a part of both sides, so you have to accept it. Now and then , you have to do something for the art, but then you have to do something for the people right after that.”
Although the titular character was a scene stealer, the reality was set when it came to the cast interacting with the famous mammal safer than a real bear but no less effective.
“We had an actor, Allan Henry, who does a lot of creature work for things like The Hobbit. He’s a huge dude from New Zealand decked out in black spandex and a bear head,” Jackson revealed. “If that doesn’t strike fear into you, I don’t know what does.”
“He’s a great guy and he made my job as an actor so much easier. It was so much better than having a tennis ball on a stick for eyeliner or one of the other tropes they give you for CGI. We are all completely and utterly grateful to Alan.”
If audiences pan out as expected, could this be the start of a franchise? Could we expect a Cocaine Bear cinematic universe? Jackson Jr.
“Anything that puts Alden Ehrenreich and Elizabeth Banks back together, I’ll sign,” he said with a laugh. “I think we’ve got a sneaky number one movie on our hands. We need to put asses in seats. I guarantee you haven’t seen this before, and it’s just a fun ride for the audience. We really need some. fun entertainment in the movie theaters.”
He concluded, “You don’t know how weird it is to do interviews during the day, and people on the news are like, ‘So, O’Shea, tell us about this bear on cocaine. .’ It’s unbelievable. What a job. What a country.”
Cocaine Bear is in theaters now