Tom Cruise's cousin makes his mark in 'Bedroom'

by Bonnie Britton

Gesturing, hunching over, getting into the face of his interviewer, actor William Mapother clearly wants it known how much he thinks of In the Bedroom. p. “It honors the audience’s instincts and intelligence,” he said. “It is one of the least manipulative films in recent memory. It trusts the audience to tolerate, enjoy and interpret . . . ambiguity. Ambiguity not unlike that you find in real life. Not judging, simply presenting.” Mapother, a ’87 Notre Dame graduate and Louisville native, isn’t the only one who says the Miramax film and the performances in it are special.

It’s a cliche, but many critics are raving about In the Bedroom , a quiet, small character-driven film set in Maine, that deals with the heartbreak of a son’s murder and the realities of the legal system. Sissy Spacek and Tom Wilkinson play the parents of the victim (Nick Stahl). Mapother plays Richard Strout, an abusive husband. David Ansen of Newsweek called his performance “scarily real.”

During a recent visit to The Indianapolis Star , __ the tall, wiry Mapother came across as intense, bright, funny and open. He didn’t bristle when asked about his relationship to another, more famous Mapother who changed his name: Tom Cruise, born Thomas Cruise Mapother IV.p. They’re first cousins, related through their fathers. In profile, more than head-on, the resemblance is striking.p.

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