Sam Rockwell eats fried chicken but it’s fellow Oscar-winning actor Christian Bale who packs on the pounds in the official trailer for “Vice,” Adam McKay’s political dramedy about President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.
Framed through a conversation during which Bush (Rockwell) chows down on a chicken wing while asking Cheney (Bale) to be his 2000 running mate, the trailer (above) highlights the atypical relationship between the would-be president and his unusually powerful Veep—and the lasting geopolitical ramifications of their eight years in the White House.
When Bush pops the big question, Cheney—a wealthy CEO and longtime Washington insider—isn’t easily swayed. “The Vice Presidency is a mostly symbolic job,” Bale’s Cheney replies. “However, if we came to a different understanding … I can handle the more mundane jobs overseeing bureaucracy, military, energy, and, uh, foreign policy.
“Yeah, right,” Rockwell’s GWB fires back with a laugh. “I like that.”
Written and directed by McKay, a “Saturday Night Live” veteran whose filmmaking career is rooted in broad comedies like “Anchorman" and “Step Brothers,” "Vice" is his first film since 2015's “The Big Short,” an Oscar-winning examination of the housing market collapse which also starred Bale.
In “The Big Short,” Bale shined as the quirky, heavy-metal drumming financial guru Michael Burry. In “Vice,” the 44-year-old British actor underwent an even more massive transformation to become the paunchy, elderly politician, reportedly even gaining 40 pounds for the role.
Other actors transforming themselves to play some of “Vice's” many famous figures include Amy Adams as Dick’s wife Lynne Cheney, Tyler Perry as General Colin Powell, and repeat Stern Show guest Steve Carell as Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.
“Vice” opens Dec. 25. Watch the official trailer (above).