Remember Haley Joel Osment, the adorable/creepy kid from The Sixth Sense and Pay It Forward? He’s making a comeback in Sassy Pants and trying his darndest to make a new impression on a public that hasn’t seen him in a feature film since 2003 when he starred Secondhand Lions.
In the new independent comedy, he plays Chip, a young, hard-partying gay man who forms a relationship with his much older boyfriend’s naïve daughter. The bold career move reminds me of Macaulay Culkin, another former child star who tried to make the difficult transition into adult stardom by reemerging in edgy projects like Party Monster and the religious comedy Saved!. While it didn’t exactly work for Culkin, hopefully Osment’s makes a much more successful re-introduction on Jan. 28, the day when Sassy Pants premieres at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.
Written and directed by Coley Sohn, the film also stars Anna Gunn, Diedrich Bader, Ashely Rickards, Martin Spanjers, Rene Rosado, Shanna Collins, Drew Droege, and Jenny O’Hara.
Bethany Pruitt (Rickards) is valedictorian of her class – her one student homeschool class. Stuck with younger brother Shayne (Spanjers) under their perky but oppressive mother June’s (Gunn) thumb, Bethany’s only escape is a teen fashion ‘zine courtesy of her absentee gay dad.
Life at dad Dale’s (Bader) mobile home is no picnic either. Despite the close bond she forms with his fun, younger boyfriend, Chip (Osment) Dad’s self-loathing, alcoholic outbursts weigh heavy on Bethany. She finds solace selling cloathes at a cheap, trendy retail chain, Jail Bait, but her petty, cutthroat coworkers cause a new set of “real world” navigation problems.
When Bethany learns about Fashion Art Technology Institute, aka F.A.T.I., she sees a chance to break free once and for all and forge her own brighter future. How she gets there will redefine her and her family and maybe even update her wardrobe.
How do you think Haley Joel Osment looks after all these years? What do yo think of the movie?
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