By Kaye Foley
Bart Freundlich’s new coming-of-age drama, “Wolves,” takes on high school basketball and family dynamics. The film follows basketball star Anthony Keller (Taylor John Smith), who is trying to play ball in college, but the gambling addiction of his father, Lee (Michael Shannon), threatens his future.
Yahoo Global News Anchor Katie Couric sat down with Freundlich, Shannon, and Carla Gugino, who plays Anthony’s mother, Jenny, to talk about “Wolves.”
“Really, where it started was with my love of basketball,” said Freundlich, who wrote and directed the film. “I played in high school and constantly around playgrounds in New York. It was a way of communicating with my friends. I recognized for a lot of us it was our way of working stuff out. … That’s where it started. Very slowly, over time, it evolved into this family story. …
“Underneath it all there’s a very sensitive and romantic person that just kind of got beaten down by circumstance, you know?” Shannon said of his character. “And I think there are a lot of people out there like that, so it’s always a good story to tell.”
“There are no villains and there are no heroes in this movie. It really is … people trying to do the best they can, as we all are,” Gugino added.
Freundlich, Shannon and Gugino also weighed in on the first six weeks of Donald Trump’s presidency.
“I think in terms of the disparity, we are not the United States of America right now. It’s become extremely apparent in this particular election more than ever,” Gugino said. “Our biggest problem right now is that these two very, very different groups of people are not communicating with each other, they’re communicating amongst themselves.”
Michael Shannon also spoke about his role in the Tom Ford film “Nocturnal Animals,” which earned him his second Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor.