Brendan Fraser made a fairytale comeback in Hollywood with his role in The Whale. The movie hit the theaters on 9th December 2022.

It premiered on 4th September 2022 at the 79th Venice International Film Festival. The highlight of the film festival was the six-minute standing ovation for Fraser.

As response the audience brought tears of joy, and the actor was overwhelmed by the gesture. It was surreal as this was the first significant role for Fraser since 2013.

Brendan received a wide range of applause from critics all over the world following the movie's worldwide release. On top of that, the audience, who were eagerly waiting for Fraser's comeback, also loved his role and the movie.

The prolonged drought for the actor ended with the role of Charlie in The Whale. It also landed him his first-ever Academy Award Nomination in the Best Actor category.

A career spanning decades with several brilliant performances and a comeback signifying his acting prowess has seen all the ups and downs.

Starting from his breakthrough in the early 90s, his rise to stardom, his absence from films, and his recent comeback, here's a timeline of Fraser's career.

Brendan Fraser Start in the Hollywood Industry

Brendan Fraser starred in 'School Ties' alongside Matt Damon and Chris O'Donnell.
Brendan Fraser starred in 'School Ties' alongside Matt Damon and Chris O'Donnell.( Source : timesofisrael )

Brendan Fraser started in the movie industry through Dogfight. Fraser acted as Sailor No. 1 in the 1991 period drama movie which was his debut role.

The 1992 film, Encino Man, handed the actor his first leading role. He portrayed the role of Linkavitch "Link" Chomofsky, and the movie made good box office numbers. He also appeared in School Ties, starring Matt Damon and Chris O'Donnell.

The artist's early years in the movie industry were not illustrious, as his next three movies:

  • The Scout
  • With Honors
  • Airheads

In 1995, he acted in The Passion of Darkly Noon and appeared in Now and Then. Likewise, Fraser also starred in The Twilight of the Golds in 1997.

Fraser's early career days in the movie industry did not have a blockbuster start. But, it was all about the change in the year 1997.

Brendan Fraser First Major Hit

Brendan Fraser had first major hit with George of the Jungle. The comedy film launched in 1997 and brought a string of success for the actor.

The film was directed by Sam Weisman and starred notable actors like Leslie Mann and Thomas Haden Church. The audience loved the parody or spoof version of Tarzan and bagged more than $170 million.

Brendan Fraser starred in the 1997 hit, 'George of the Jungle.'
Brendan Fraser starred in the 1997 hit, 'George of the Jungle.'( Source : google )

Following the first major hit, the actor tried a different approach with his role in Gods and monsters. His role as Clayton Boone was commended and showcased the range and diversity of the actor.

Similarly, Fraser's other movies, such as Blast from the Past and Still Breathing, also enjoyed decent box office numbers.

Fraser Had Iconic Role as 'Rick O'Connell' in The Mummy Trilogy

Brendan Roger played the iconic Rick O'Connell in The Mummy Trilogy.
Brendan Roger played the iconic Rick O'Connell in The Mummy Trilogy.( Source : tvinsider )

Fraser had iconic role as 'Rick O'Connell' in the Mummy Trilogy sprang his success to the moon. The Mummy gained him a massive success.

The action-adventure movie with mummies and history with lots of fun was a blockbuster in the theaters. It collected a massive sum of $416.4 million.

While the audience loved the movie and made it a massive hit, the critics were not sure about the film. The mixed reviews from the critics never became a hindrance for the audience to swarm the theaters.

The story of Rick O'Connell did not end here. A sequel of the movie was released in 2001 as The Mummy Returns.

Brendan Fraser once again returned on his adventure as O'Connell and did not disappoint his fans. The sequel made a greater buzz among the audience, and the theaters hosted houseful shows.

The film was made with a budget of $98 million and was able to make a business of $435 million. It was able to surpass the collection of the first film by $18+ million.


Fate handed Fraser another opportunity to act as O'Connell in the third installment of the movie.

The film was titled 'The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.' The movie shifted the focus from ancient Egypt to ancient China for the film.

The charm and nostalgia were once again recreated through this 2008 film.  It consisted of a bigger cast, including Jet Li, Michelle Yeoh, and Maria Bello, among many notable names.

It did not go in vain, as the movie managed to make $403.4 million at the box office.

Fraser's role in The Mummy Trilogy gained him fame that others films couldn't. These movies still remain one of the most talked about movies of the actor to this date.

Brendan Fraser Filmography From 2002-2010

Brendan Fraser starred in multiple films between 2002-2010.
Brendan Fraser starred in multiple films between 2002-2010.( Source : letterboxd )

2002-2010 was the most significant part of Brendan Fraser career. During this phase, he acted in different movies and was at the peak of his stardom.

He acted as Alden Pyle in the critically acclaimed political drama picture The Quiet American. This 2002 movie was Fraser's other successful attempt at working in a serious film.

Likewise, the star was also a part of 2003's Looney Tunes: Back in Action. In the subsequent year, he played Rick Cabot in Crash, the Academy Award-winning film.

Some of the notable works of Fraser during this period include The Last time, Journey to the Center of the Earth, and Inkheart.

In 2006, Fraser was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame.

He became the first-ever actor born in the United States to get this accolade. However, it is sad that the actor is yet to receive a star in the star-studded Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Brendan Fraser's Struggles in his Personal and Professional Life

Brendan Fraser struggles in his personal life started with his separation from Afton Smith.
Brendan Fraser struggles in his personal life started with his separation from Afton Smith.( Source : thelist )

Brendan Fraser's struggles in his personal life started in the late 2000s. It was the same time when his appearance in movies began to decrease.

Fraser's career, which took a massive leap at the turn of the Century, slowly faded into the darkness after the third installment of The Mummy trilogy.

The environment at home was not great either. The actor went through a rough patch in his marital relationship with his wife, Afton Smith.

Fraser and Smith married on 27th September 1998 and publicly revealed the decision about their separation in 2007. The divorce was settled in 2009, and Fraser was instructed to party for child support and monthly alimony to Smith.

Brendan Fraser with his two youngest sons on the screening of 'The Whale.'
Brendan Fraser with his two youngest sons on the screening of 'The Whale.'( Source : people )

During their nine years of marriage, they had three sons. After the divorce, Fraser requested the court to decrease the alimony amount. However, he did not raise objections towards the child support amount.

Also, when the actor was dealing with marital conflict, he underwent several surgeries.

The movie star encountered several damages to the body during his time as the action hero. As a result, he got spinal surgery and had to undergo a partial knee replacement.

The star-studded and lavish lifestyle that appeared on the screen was not immune to the effect of the hard work and long hours on the sets. It became one of the reasons that led to the decline in the star's career.

Following all these things, the rough road followed his professional life as well. By the end of 2013, the movie star had only a handful of roles, and none of them helped him gain back his stardom and popularity.

Meanwhile, another tragedy hit Fraser's life. His beloved mother, Carol Mary, departed her body in 2016 due to cancer.

This incident drove Fraser to the lowest point in his life, and he became a victim of depression.

The separation from his spouse, the demise of his mother, and health problems were more than enough to drive the actor away from acting.

The "Brenaissance" Phase

The revival of Brendan Fraser in acting.
The revival of Brendan Fraser in acting.( Source : hiddenremote )

The "Brenaissance" phase started for the actor in 2018, the renaissance of Brendan Fraser. After being away from acting for around five years, Fraser revived himself with several TV roles.

The first to knock on Fraser's door was the Trust. He acted as James Fletcher Chase in the American drama series.

Likewise, the roles soon kept coming as Nathan Fowler in Condor, Robotman in Titans, and Cliff Steele / Robotman in the DC series Doom Patrol. In 2020, he acted in another TV series named Professionals as Peter Swann.

Not only that, but Fraser also made his return to movies and played significant roles in The Poison Rose, Line of Descent, and No Sudden Move.

The Return of Brendan Fraser

Fraser played the role of Charlie in 'The Whale' and have received several awards.
Fraser played the role of Charlie in 'The Whale' and have received several awards.( Source : pedestrian )

The return of Brendan Fraser to the big screens was something that his fans waited for so long. Fraser gave one of his best acting performances in the 2022 film The Whale.

Since the movie's premiere, there seems to be no looking back for the actor.

The character of Charlie, portrayed by Fraser, is nothing like what one might have pictured as the return of the movie star. This film has once again offered him the opportunity to keep striding forward and get the respect and accolades he has long lost.

Fraser won the Best Actor award at the Critic's Choice Awards on 15th January 2023. He also bagged Hollywood Critics Association Awards, Screen Actors Guild Awards, St. Louis Film Critics Association, and Women Film Critics Circle awards in the same category.

Aside from the recognition, the future for Fraser looks promising. Martin Scorsese's directorial Killers of the Flowe Moon and Max Barbakow's directorial Brothers are in the post-production process.

The upcoming movie projects and the TV roles featuring Fraser will be anticipated to awe the audience.