Will Forte is best known for his physical comedy and impressions on Saturday Night Live, where he was a regular cast member from 2002 to 2010. But recently — and not necessarily on purpose — the actor, who got his start with Los Angeles improv troupe The Groundlings, is taking on more dramatic roles, including the upcoming Run & Jump, premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 20.
“I had never ruled out the possibility but just had never found myself in a position to do something dramatic,” Forte says. “So when I got to see the script it was such a great story, I thought it would be really fun to try to be a part of it.”
Run and Jump follows the story of an Irish wife (Maxine Peake) dealing with the aftermath of her husband’s stroke. Forte plays a neuropsychologist who is studying the man’s progress and observing his mental health.
“Thank god I didn’t have to do an Irish accent,” Forte jokes. “ I have grant money to study this guy so I move out to Ireland and I’m watching him as he goes about his daily routines. And it’s a situation where the family obviously doesn’t want this intruder in their lives but they need the money and they take me in. It’s a really intense experience.”
Forte says director Steph Green gave him a book about neuropsychology to help him prepare for the role. “And I grew a beard!”
Check out the exclusive trailer for Run and Jump (and Forte’s beard) below.