| Kevin Zegers: Transamerica Fact Sheet
[NOTE: Kevin Zegers says Toby is not gay.]
Distributed by The Weinstein
Company (Bob and
Harvey Weinstein, founders of Miramax;
this is their first non-Miramax acquisition)
Awards for Transamerica
Other awards won:
Some of the Film Festivals that featured Transamerica:
Transamerica reviews of Kevin Zegers
As a boy who considers sex his chief talent, Zegers - of the Air Bud films and last year's Dawn of the Dead remake - conveys Toby's essential sweetness and hunger for real affection, making him much more than just a vain or damaged kid.
And Zegers (the Dawn of the Dead remake and the Air Bud movies) is warm, wary and complicated as a street kid desperate, without knowing it, for a real family connection -- no matter how untraditional it might be.
"Zegers, who looks and sounds like a young Leonardo DiCaprio with his tousled hair and wiry frame, finds a natural banter with Huffman as their characters feel each other out and fail to tell each other the whole truth."
" When I first met Kevin Zegers, who I ended up casting, I was meeting so many young men for this role, and I interviewed a lot of street hustlers who were a very tough and sad bunch of kids. Kevin walked in to the Chateau Marmont for a meeting in a t-shirt and jeans, and scruffy hair. I took one look at him and said, "No way, no way." Because he was the most ridiculously gorgeous human being I'd ever seen in my life. You can't believe how pretty he is. He was so smart and so vulnerable, and he auditioned for me. It was a fantastic audition, and I kept thinking: can I do this? I'm so glad I forgave his disability, the poor thing. (laughs) And he never had a chance to do anything this raw and real before, and he worked his butt off. I really worked hard with him, and he worked hard. He pared that performance down to the simple bare essentials. He had to be very naked emotionally, as well as physically."
KEVIN ZEGERS, who plays Ms. Huffman's son. "There was skinny-dipping," he confirmed. "It happened a few times. We stayed at hotels with pools."
"The transgender spin avoids gimmickry thanks to Tucker's deft touch and the subtle work of Huffman and the rest of the pitch-perfect cast, especially Kevin Zegers as the lost-and-found offspring."
Zegers is a beautifully sulky young man who has firmly wiped out his "Air Bud" roots with his comfort playing a heartbreakingly alluring street hustler who only trusts his sexuality when dealing with others.
"Her son is capably played by Kevin Zegers, who does an impersonation of sorts of an omni-sexual Leonardo DiCaprio"
Zegers is terrific
"Zegers has the looks and stature of a young Brad Pitt. His poise during several potentially compromising scenes is darkly charismatic, including fully and partially nude shots in an intense prostitution scene. Toby is immature and ignorant. He steals. He throws tantrums. As Bree drives him cross country back to her home in L.A., he imagines he’ll become a film star when they get there. Yet Zegers balances the edginess that allowed Toby to survive on the New York streets with an essential innocence in his watery, puppy dog eyes."
"Kevin Zegers, as Toby, is wonderful to look at and agreeably gifted--and is possibly at the start of a considerable career."
The film's intelligent compassion also extends to the son (Kevin Zegers, who is as handsome as the young Alain Delon).
Transamerica has been chosen as #4 of the top 10 films of the year by the Associated Press.
A handsome, versatile kid
"At the same time, Zegers' sexually unzipped Toby is such a classic homoerotic fantasy -- a scruffy, narcissistic sub-James Dean type in long hair and jeans -- that it's sometimes hard to imagine the two as really father and son, mother and son, or any permutation thereof."
"Resembling a darker-haired Leonardo DiCaprio, Zegers more than holds up his side of the two-character equation."
"Transmerica's actors, at least, are impressive - namely Zegers (who delivers the film's best line: "So, you're cutting your **** off for Jesus?") and Fionnula Flanagan, as Bree's disapproving mother."
Tucker credits Huffman, but thinks her co-star, Kevin Zegers, deserves equal recognition. "He walked into the room, and I said no way in hell - he’s absurdly pretty," [director Duncan] Tucker remembers. "Then you talk to him, and he’s really smart, so you hate him even more. Then he did the audition and he was terrific, and I hated him more." It took several weeks, but Tucker finally forgave Zegers for his perfection.
When Bree’s therapist (a shockingly zaftig Elizabeth Peña) orders her to fly to New York and make contact with a previously unknown teenage son (the Tobey Maguire-ish Kevin Zegers)
"So Bree bails out her son and embarks on Hollywood's favorite cliché, the awkward father-son road trip, made believable by the incredible acting and chemistry of Huffman and Zegers. The chemistry between the two serves them well in the characters' necessary awkward times and the moments of deeper emotional connection."
"Kevin Zegers, who viewers may remember for his early role in the Disney film Air Bud (1997), brings a childish fear to his role as Toby. His pitch-perfect emotions in each scene create genuine teenage angst."
"Zegers offers strong support."
"Kevin Zegers is a great mirror to Huffman. Though over 21 in real life, he has no trouble reverting to a confused 17-year-old. As the down-and-out Toby, Zegers does well with being righteous in some situations and sinister in others."
"Kevin Zegers is also good as Bree's unknowing son, Toby. He has a sleazy sexuality that plays out well against Huffman's incredible uptightness. While Bree feels uncomfortable being seen in a heavy bathrobe, Toby freely flings off his clothing anytime he feels there's a good opportunity for displaying his nipples."
"Kevin Zegers does a fine job as Bree's foil, exuding a careless natural sexuality which attracts men and women alike. But between predictable invasions of Bree's comfort zone, a far more interesting character emerges. A budding siren, Toby craves sex, using it as a wall to block out real intimacy. This sort of male character has remained largely unexplored in cinema"
"Zegers, who may remind some of a young Leonardo DiCaprio, nails his character, an abused and damaged teenager dealing with more than the usual issues of sex and self-image, but also the confusion he feels about Bree, with whom he begins to feel a strange kinship"
"Kevin Zegers - looking, sounding, and acting like the love-child of Christian Slater and Ian Somerhalder"
"Bree's son played by Kevin Zegers is not a big name, but also delivers a powerful and quiet performance playing a caring yet troubled street kid in a compelling and real way."
Young Zegers nicely blends the ugly street-wise wariness of a troubled kid - he's a druggie and has worked as a male prostitute - and the coltish innocence of an adult-in-progress.
"Zegers is a charismatic young actor"
This is from an article by someone who attended the Critic's Choice Awards on Thursday, Jan 9, 2006. She was a "seat-filler" and sat at Kevin's table.
"Transamerica has its funny moments, its human moments, and its formulaic road-trip moments. But it's also got Huffman and Zegers' top-flight performances, which lend dignity to the story and to the complex characters they play. But Transamerica is a tag-team movie, and Zegers carries his share of the load on and off the road. Since he initially found fame as the pre-teen star of the early Air Bud movies, it's almost startling to see him tackle such a demanding a role as this. Without his performance, Huffman's wouldn't nearly be as effective - and it would likely tip the film's delicate balance. Huffman may win an Oscar, but Zegers deserves some of the credit."
"It's unfortunate that in all the attention being given to Huffman, Zegers is being overlooked. His performance as the bitter young hustler is every bit as nuanced and affecting as Huffman's."
[Country singer Dolly] Parton's speaking voice is high and girlish. On the phone, you'd swear she wasn't a day over 20. And her enthusiasm is equally youthful. She raves over Transamerica co-star Kevin Zegers. "He was spectacular, heartbreaking!" (A turn that should have been recognized by the Academy.)
Ninety percent of the hoopla has focused on Huffman. But Zegers, who has no previous credits listed in the film's official press kit, must not be overlooked. His is a perfectly modulated performance, measuring the rebellious with the ambitious with an underlying vulnerability.
"Zegers navigates the role of Toby with a sense of danger but generates sympathy."
"Kevin Zegers makes an equally impressive transformation from his previous roles in kid movies such as Air Bud to this more serious role in a dark comedy."
"The cast of Transamerica is premium. Kevin Zegers, Osbourne’s son Toby, made a name for himself with his uncanny performance as the 17-year-old drug-addicted prostitute. There are many other notable performances..."
Despite his extreme youth, the 22-year-old Zegers has appeared in over 40 films. You may recall him from the short-lived Titans (where he was featured alongside John Barrowman and Casper Van Dien), Air Bud 3 and Air Bud 4 (both of which I somehow missed), or recent episodes of House and Smallville. He’s from Canada and still lives in Toronto with his girlfriend (sorry). As for photos, we have several sexy shirtless and provocative shots of him. But since I don’t want to let you down, we will also run some nude pics and some actual footage from Transamerica..
[Note: "Billy Masters" is a syndicated column that runs in newspapers all over the country, mostly alternative papers.]
"Zegers, who looks and sounds like a young Leonardo DiCaprio, finds a natural banter with Huffman as their characters feel each other out and fail to tell each other the whole truth."
"The son, Toby (Kevin Zegers), is a street hustler and hunkeroo whose American dream is to be a porn actor."
"Zegers and Flanagan are fine supporting actors"
"Then there is Kevin Zegers, as the son who turns hustler taking care of the needs of the wayfarer. He brings an unmatched intensity to his craft as the guy who must come to terms with the fact that his father wants to play a mom. Not much sulking, no moaning, little fist-smashing stuff. Just controlled anger and body language befitting a guy who has spent time with flies and bushes."
"The rest of the cast shines and their performances are well worth the ticket price. Kevin Zegers' portrayal of Toby is going to shoot him to the top of the list for casting directors in this town."
"Monday, March 27, Transamerica, starring Felicity Huffman and Woodstock’s own Kevin Zegers, will be shown. Huffman won a Golden Globe for her performance and lost to Reese Witherspoon in the Oscar race. Many are calling Transamerica the break-out film for Zegers. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if the young actor was able to make the trek back home to attend the film’s screening in Woodstock? Zegers was spotted at the after-Oscars bash hosted by none other than Sir Elton John.
Many local residents will recall when the actor attended a showing at Gallery Cinemas of one of the Air Bud movies he starred in a few years ago, signing autographs and meeting his fans. Zegers has come a long way from those Air Bud days."
"Gorgeous newcomer Kevin Zegers co-stars as Bree's son. With moppish good looks and bad-puppy charisma, Zegers manages the Herculean feat of scene-stealing from the masterful Huffman."
"As much as Transamerica may be Huffman’s film, Zeger still manages to stand his own opposite the veteran actress. Without the two actors’ natural chemistry, the emotional pull behind Huffman’s performance would fall flat. It is through the development of their relationship that "Transamerica" succeeds."
Zegers never quite gets a handle on the emotional aspects of the role - but writer-director Duncan Tucker does, admittedly, present him with a few jarring character inconsistencies.
"Full marks to Kevin Zegers for supporting Huffman with his Toby who’s so subtle, silent, and restless that you want to know more of him. His scrawny look, unkempt hair, and stained T-shirt make him look more vulnerable than his father, who now wants to be a woman."