Golden Globe winning actor Richard Gere is set to star in two upcoming movies from Israeli directors. The first, due out soon, is Time Out of Mind directed by Oren Moverman and the second currently being filmed is called Oppenheimer by Joseph Cedar.
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The Hollywood star is known more for his roles in light hit studio films like An Officer and a Gentleman and Chicago. Gere now seems to be following in the footsteps of many of his peers in that he is appearing in more dramatic independent movies in an attempt to garner the most coveted and elusive acknowledgement for an actor’s worth, an Oscar nomination.
For Time Out of Mind Gere shuns his more traditional type of role as a romantic lead and instead he plays a homeless man. The actor wears his hair gray and has an unkempt gray beard in the movie in which he plays a man named George who tries to reconnect with his estranged daughter.
Now 65, the actor took to the streets of New York as real people and not actors were filmed passing him by as he begged for money.
This is only the third film directed by Moverman whose last effort was 2011’s Rampart which stared Woody Harrelson as a Los Angeles police officer. Harrelson also appeared in Moverman’s first movie 2007’s The Messenger for which the two were nominated for Oscars, Harrelson for acting and Moverman for the screenplay.
Now Yediot Ahronot has reported that Gere will appear in two time Oscar nominee Joseph Cedar’s first English language film, as well as his first to take place outside of Israel. Cedar has been nominated for best foreign language film Oscars for the Hebrew movies The Footnote and Beaufort.
In the now under production Oppenheimer Gere will play the title character alongside Israeli actor Lior Ashkenazi. The movie will be filmed in both New York and Israel.
Gere’s character, Norman Oppenheimer, is a New York Jewish activist who begins a relationship with an Israeli politician one day on Madison Ave. Oppenheimer buys the Israeli an expensive pair of shoes that he could not afford to buy for himself.
The film also marks the first time that Gere will play a Jew in a movie.