Movies - TV
How Hustle Picked The Perfect NBA Star To Play
The Movie's 'Anti-Hero' Villain
In “Hustle,” NBA star Anthony Edwards plays Kermit Wilts, the chief rival in the draft to Juancho Hernangómez's Bo Cruz. While Adam Sandler and director Jeremiah Zagar seem to disagree on whose idea it was to cast him, they both agree that the “anti-hero” character Edwards brought to life — with the help of acting coach Noelle Gentile — was just what the film needed.
Zagar revealed that the decision to cast Edwards was Sandler’s idea after he had seen the NBA player’s press conferences, where Edwards had become known for his humor and personality. Sandler, however, gave credit to Hernangómez, who told Sandler that Edwards, his friend and former teammate, was interested in being in the movie.
Either way, Edwards finally got cast during the second half of filming. In an interview, Zagar praised the star player for bringing “realism and swagger” to the role, saying, "If Kermit is just a villain he's uninteresting, but if he's an anti-hero, which is how I see him, if he's more like Michael Jordan than some kind of two-dimensional character, he's more exciting.”