How to describe Frank?
That’s the question posed in ‘Frank’, a new comedy telling the story of indie band Soronprfbs and their charismatic lead singer Frank, who is rarely seen without his giant papier-maché head.
Rising star of Hollywood Michael Fassbender plays the man behind the mask. It was a role he relished, according to director Lenny Abrahamson,
“He claims that it was quite liberating, because he didn’t have to turn up early for makeup and hair,” explained Abrahamson. “He actually said at one point that he was going to insist contractually on playing every part from now on inside a large, papier-maché head. For the romantic leads, it’s probably not such a good idea. He’s also an actor that doesn’t choose the obvious roles. He challenges himself and I think acting through this mask and finding ways of making it expressive, is such a great challenge for him as an actor.”
The film was inspired by the career of British comedy icon, Frank Sidebottom; a character created by punk musician Chris Sievey in order to promote his band, The Freshies, in 1984.
“There’s a naive openness to the expression. We worked really hard in designing the head,” continued Abrahamson. “It’s not the same as the original Frank Sidebottom head, it’s a little bit different, because the character is different. It’s more homemade looking, it also has this kind of open, slightly lost look – which is amazing that you can say that about two eyes, a nose and a mouth, but it does and … I think the audience is encouraged to project their feelings onto Frank.”
‘Frank’ will be released in the UK and Ireland on May 9.