It’s not that easy to convince Adam Sandler to do something outside of the comedy genre he’s comfortable in. The Murder Mystery and Grown Ups actor really loved the seriousness of Uncut Gems when he initially read through the Safdie brothers script; however, he openly admits he was scared to do the movie. In fact, he credits his wife for convincing him to take the more serious role.
During a recent appearance on Ellen, Adam Sandler gave his wife Jackie Sandler a lot of credit for helping him to choose roles. In the case of Uncut Gems, he was worried about some of the real acting he’d have to do, but she strongly encouraged him. Per Sandler:
I read it and I loved the movie, but I was scared to do it. Then, I asked Jackie to read it. We do this together, me and Jackie, we discuss what I’m gonna do and she gives me strength and courage to jump into this stuff. So she read it and was like, ‘You have to do it.’ Right when she says I have to do it I go, ‘OK.’ I jumped in and I had to do so many scenes where bad things happen and I have to be naked and stuff – that’s terrible for everybody –but it was an amazing time.
Adam Sandler has done serious movies before, and on a semi-regular basis. While most of his resume involves him signing on for movies that allow himself and often his friends to film in exotic locations, every once in awhile he throws in a more serious role to shake things up. This is how he ended up in The Meyerowitz Stories in 2017, as well as projects like Men, Women & Children.
There’s also, of course, movies like Spanglish and Punch-Drunk Love, the latter of which helped people to see that Adam Sandler is a capable actor beyond being just the comedic relief.
As far as Uncut Gems goes, it’s easy to see why Adam Sandler may have had some trepidation over taking the role. There’s the nudity he mentioned to Ellen DeGeneres, but also the movie in general has been said to be anxiety inducing, as it follows Sandler as a degenerate gambler who continually puts himself in worse and worse situations due to his habits. Assumedly, that's not an easy project to sign on for.
You can hear more about the role in the video below.
Ultimately, Uncut Gems only recently hit theaters (in a limited, but financially successful release), but Adam Sandler is already earning early awards buzz for the role. (And he’s joking about the prospect to boot.) We’ll have to wait and see if the movie earns him something more lauded than the Razzie record he’s previously broken.
But it’s worth remembering he wouldn’t be in this potential position at all if it weren’t for the encouragement of his wife.
In the meantime, while we wait for the rest of the holiday releases this year to finally hit theaters, you can take a look at what movies are coming up with our full release schedule.