THE ASTRONAUT'S WIFE
At the heart of The Astronaut's Wife is a
hero who returns home from a space mission profoundly changed.
On the surface, Spencer Armacost is everything an admired American
ought to be - a witty raconteur, a man who showed extreme courage
under near-deadly circumstances, and a husband who loves his wife
with an intense and irrevocable passion. But whatever happened
to Spencer out in space has added something new to the mix: a
sense of distrust, of suspicion, of being ever so slightly off
kilter. When Spencer's wife announces her pregnancy with twins,
Spencer seems completely devoted to her well-being, the perfect
father-to-be. But is he really trustworthy? Or is he secretly
using his charm, brilliance and affection to lead his wife down
a path of beastly destruction?
To play Spencer Armacost, Rand Ravich chose Johnny Depp, who has
been lauded for his many portraits of intriguingly lost souls.
This time around, he plays an American icon who seems to have
it all - but may in fact be living a lie with the power to destroy
humanity. Depp literally deconstructs Spencer Armacost's heroic,
compassionate nature and reveals the nightmare shadows within.
"Johnny Depp is in my mind the best actor of his generation,"
comments Rand Ravich. "I felt he would bring a necessary
element to the role of Spencer Armacost: truth."
"Depp's classic, rugged American good looks combined with
that sense of mystery going on behind his eyes works incredibly
well for this character," adds executive producer Mark Johnson.
"He brings that quality of underlying danger to Spencer,
the sense of unpredictability, the feeling of never really quite
knowing who this man is and what his true intentions are."
For producer Andew Lazar, Depp carries off an elaborate challenge
in The Astronaut's Wife. "He reveals what lies underneath
the surface of a beloved hero," says Lazar. "He can
be both the consummate gentleman and the most sinister source
of evil at the very same time."
Who is Spencer Armacost really? As Depp portrays him, he is a
man whose essential goodness has been corrupted by something out
of this world; at once hero and demon. Intriguingly, Depp followed
his performance in The Astronaut's Wife with two more nuanced,
scary thrillers forthcoming this year: Tim Burton's Sleepy
Hollow and Roman Polanski's The Ninth Gate.
Summarizes Charlize Theron: "Spencer Armacost is a man who
gets to lives out his dreams as an astronaut, which fascinates
people because astronauts get to experience the unknown. But then
he becomes a nightmare, which seems to go against everything you
believe about him. Johnny is so talented he captures all of that.
He's just beautiful to watch at work."
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