How close are Nat and Alex Wolff to their ‘Stella’s Last Weekend’ characters? It's complicated
The sibling actors also admit that making the film with their mother Polly Draper allowed them to process their dad’s battle with cancer
It is understandable that Nat and Alex Wolff are closer than most brothers.
The duo, who are just 3 years apart in age, starred alongside each other in the Nickelodeon musical comedy series “The Naked Brothers Band” in their formative years between 2007 and 2009, while they have both made the successful transition from child actor to up and coming Hollywood star.
But despite the ascent of Nat and Alex, which has included appearances in “The Fault In Our Stars,” “Paper Towns” and “Death Note” and “Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle “and “Hereditary,” respectively, the pair recently admitted to me that they had no choice but to star in the indie comedy “Stella’s Last Weekend.”
Not just because the film, which revolves around Jack (Nat) returning home to mark the death of the titular dog only to learn that his younger brother Oliver (Alex) has started a relationship with Violet (Paulina Singer), who Jack had previously connected with at a party, was written and directed by their mother Polly Draper.
But also because it was the first film to really bring their sibling dynamic and banter to life in an authentic manner, although both brothers were keen to insist that although the movie’s characters do feel like them they’re mostly distinct. Especially when it comes to the Wolffs arguing over a girl.
“I think the movie shows our closeness, that we feel like best friends,” explained Nat. “Alex and I are not only brothers but are close as friends. But we also went through a really unique and strange childhood together and there is no one else that was there except for us."
“Besides the fact that we have our own inside jokes and own language. Usually when we hang out with anyone else, even if it is us two and one of our girlfriends or parents, everyone says they always feel like a third wheel. Because we have a certain brother language that is special. This movie was a great way of getting that intensity on screen.”
There was another reason why Alex was specifically attracted to the project, too, because the 20-year-old admitted that the film allowed him to explore his darker sense of humor, which usually isn’t tapped into on his other projects.
“Maybe I hadn’t been able to explore my dark sense of humor. It is kind of a specific thing. But my mum really appreciated my dark sense of humor. I like to push the boundaries of comedy, and I’m not really allowed to do that before. Because mostly I just do really dark movies, like 'Hereditary'.”
“But in my life I am pretty funny and I have an edgy sense of humor. I think my mum captured that really well. I think there aren’t many movies that are willing to go there. Especially family dramedys that are fairly light-hearted, to have that edgy sense of humor, it felt like I was given free reign to explore that.”
But while “Stella’s Last Weekend” features plenty of jokes there is a depth and pathos to the film, too, which was actually born out of their father Michael Wolff’s recent battle with cancer.
“In 2015 our dad got cancer and then miraculously got better. We as a family had gone through hell and back, but we all came together closer. A lot of that soul got put into the movie, which my mum had written about a year earlier, so we all jumped in full force,” recalled Nat.
“It was real touch and go for a while. It pushed us apart but then brought us back together. This was the perfect creative outlet. It is a movie that is funny and heartfelt and not dark for the sake of being dark. It was a good avenue for me to funnel some of my emotions from that personal experience.”
“Stella’s Last Weekend” is in select cinemas on October 12.