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After the role of Ozark, Tom Pelphrey is on Hollywood’s radar

NEW YORK (AP) — “Ozark” will release its final seven episodes of the series on April 29, summing up the story of a couple, played by Jason Bateman and Laura Linney (Marty and Wendy Byrde), whose family moves to the Missouri and descends deeper and deeper into a life of money laundering, drugs, and murder.

Tom Pelphrey (Ben) is no longer on the show, but his character left a lasting mark. The character of Pelphrey was introduced in season three as Wendy’s brother. Tortured soul with a heart of gold, Ben suffered from bipolar disorder and stopped taking his medication. His resulting erratic behavior threatened the Byrde’s underground operation.

Spoiler alert: In the Season 3 finale, Wendy left Ben in the path of a hitman and the show has since run as if the character was dead (although fans hope that’s not true) .

A pivotal scene for Pelphrey and for viewers was that of Ben in a taxi. He talks to the driver for over four minutes, in a very non-linear pattern, quickly changing the subject while crying at times, highlighting his mental illness.

“As an actor, you don’t want anything more or there’s nothing more than to have good material,” Pelphrey recently said on Zoom. “I had had weeks to prepare, so I memorized it back and forth and top to bottom, and I knew as well as I knew my name. We did this speech so many different times from so many in different ways and each time they let me go.

Pelphrey was already on an upward career trajectory entering ‘Ozark’, but he admits that ‘it was a game-changer’. Later that year, he also appeared in David Fincher’s “Mank” and co-stars next with Josh Brolin in the supernatural mystery series “Outer Range” for Amazon Prime, which also debuts that month.

Filming began on “Outer Range” in January 2021 in New Mexico, when the pandemic and restrictions kept many people indoors. Safety protocols on set were strict, and Pelphrey describes it as “a strange feeling of being completely isolated, juxtaposed with the most amazing actors”. He says the filming bubble has brought the actors together and they all stay in touch.

The job keeps Pelphrey moving. He likes to go to his filming locations with his faithful dog, Blue. He just shot a limited series with Elizabeth Olsen and Jesse Plemons called “Love and Death” for HBO Max. He also has a role in “She Said” based on the book by New York Times reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey, about their investigation. in Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein and sexual misconduct.

New Jersey native Pelphrey says he’s not sure what’s next. “Fortunately, I had a very good race recently. But it also means. I haven’t really been home for a long time. I am completely at peace and grateful.


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