A24 has just released the first official trailer for the film Red Rocket.The film stars an unexpected Simon Rex as a porn actor has-been who returns to his Texas hometown after his career has dwindled. We find out that he left a wife many years ago to follow his dream. He’s homeless, penniless and at the mercy of a town he swore he’s never return to. We’ve never seen Simon Rex do anything close to this performance. People are already talking Oscar.
Co-writer and director Sean Baker known for his groundbreaking and award-winning films The Florida Project and Tangerine, has reinvented Simon Rex, placing him in a context not too far from his real life, and allows Simon Rex to introduce us to Mikey, the washed-up porn actor who has been cast aside by the industry. He’s forced to return to a town that doesn’t want him, and they’re not subtle.
Alongside Simon Rex, the cast includes Suzanna Son, who portrays Strawberry, as his unlikely love interest, considering the age difference and the fact that he’s still legally married to the woman he left behind, played by Bree Elrod (Shutter Island). Brenda Deiss, Ethan Darbone, Brittney Rodriguez, and Judy Hill round out the Texas town cast.
A24 describes the films as, “The audacious new film from writer-director Sean Baker (The Florida ProjectTangerine), starring Simon Rex in a magnetic, live-wire performance, Red Rocket is a darkly funny and humane portrait of a uniquely American hustler and a hometown that barely tolerates him.”
While Simon Rex might be a bit of a stranger to this genre of film, he is no stranger to the subject matter. In his 2009 TV movie Rex, Rex explores how ‘real’ the attention-getting antics of the era’s celebrities were. It exposes the world of Hollywood’s purposefully planned and manufactured controversies through the eyes of Simon Rex, as he persistently and desperately attempts to revive his flailing career. When Simon was hired as a VJ on MTV, he was on his way… so he thought. But he was a small fish in a small pond. That’s when he was introduced to a secret world of very specialized public relations professionals called “Controversy Consultants.” Their job: to conceive, plan and execute scandals that would catapult a client into the public eye…at least for a while. Celebrities in the same dilemma, including Paris Hilton, help in describing the popularity machine.
In Red Rocket, Rex is having to redefine his life and seek happiness in this small Texas town, which he believed could only be found in the spotlight. Rex has his star rising once again with Red Rocket and has a new project in the works in Mack & Rita, director Katie Aselton’s (The Freebie, Black Rock) upcoming feature. Mack & Rita tells the story of a woman in her 30s who is struck by lightning and wakes up as a 65-year-old, which isn’t like what she imagined. He’ll star alongside Elizabeth Lail, Diane Keaton, and Wendie Malick. Red Rocket premieres December 3, 2021.