Brendan Fraser is having a moment at the Venice International Film Festival.

 "George of the Jungle" had, in the last decade, backed away from the spotlight

"I'm just trying to stay in today," Fraser said before the premiere.

 He vividly remembers reading The New York Times review of Samuel D. Hunter's play, going out to see it, and knowing he had to meet the writer.

he said, he had to make the film. But casting presented a challenge. 

a few years ago, he saw a trailer for "a low-budget Brazilian movie" with Fraser and "a lightbulb went off," he said.

"His superpower is to see the good in others and bring that out of them."

Prosthetics were used to transform Fraser into Charlie, who rarely leaves his couch.

Hunter, who also wrote the screenplay, said his play is personal

 He started it 12 years ago when he was teaching a mandatory expository writing course at Rutgers University