Oscar winner Ben Affleck dishes important life advice in the official trailer for Amazon Studios’ The Tender Bar. Based on J.R. Moehringer’s bestselling memoir and directed by Oscar winner George Clooney, The Tender Bar explores the Pulitzer Prize-winning author’s childhood and reveals the colorful characters who influenced his life.
In addition to Ben Affleck, the cast includes Tye Sheridan, Christopher Lloyd, Lily Rabe, and Daniel Ranieri. Oscar winner William Monahan adapted the memoir for the screen and Clooney, Grant Heslov, and Ted Hope produced.
“Once we told Amazon we wanted to do The Tender Bar, the question was who was going to play Uncle Charlie,” explained Clooney on casting Ben Affleck in the key role. “The character had to have two specific qualities. You have to believe he’s really smart and really well read. That is a no-brainer with Ben Affleck. He’s a really smart actor and a smart man. And then he has to be a little worn down. He needs a bit of gravitas. Ben is a different actor now than he was 15 years ago. With age comes a little bit of gray in the hair and a little bit of crinkle in his eye. Ben couldn’t have played this part five or 10 years ago. Now he is exactly right for it. As soon as we read the script, we thought of him.”
The Tender Bar is set to open in limited theatrical release on December 17, 2021 followed by a wide release on December 22nd. Amazon Prime Video subscribers can watch it on the streaming service beginning January 7, 2022.
The Plot, Courtesy of Amazon:
In 1972, 9-year-old J.R. Maguire (Daniel Ranieri, later Tye Sheridan) spends hours scanning the airwaves for The Voice, his name for the radio deejay father who deserted him and his mom years earlier. As he dreams of the day when they can be reunited, he and his fiercely protective mother Dorothy (Rabe) live with her family in his curmudgeonly grandfather’s (Lloyd) rundown house in Manhasset, Long Island, both working tirelessly to fulfill her dream of an Ivy League education for J.R.
Hungry for male attention, the boy finds comfort at the nearby Dickens pub, where the man behind the bar is his Uncle Charlie (Affleck). A self-educated truth-seeker with a closet full of classic books and a thirst for knowledge, Charlie takes the boy under his wing, encouraging J.R.’s aspirations of becoming a writer.
As J.R. grows to young adulthood with sporadic contact with his birth father, Charlie guides him through the mysteries of manhood and includes him in bowling nights, ball games and trips to the beach with his loyal band of quirky friends. But when winning a scholarship to Yale, falling in love with a brilliant and beautiful classmate and getting his dream job still don’t seem like enough to J.R., he retreats once more to the bar, only to discover he already had everything he needed in order to claim his own dreams.
Directed by George Clooney, The Tender Bar captures the heartache, vulnerability and humor of a boy’s struggle to become a man.