Steve Zahn says that he doesn’t feel like he’s ready to accept a lifetime achievement award. But after 25 years of acting in films including "Reality Bites," to "That Thing You Do," "Out of Sight," “War for Planet of the Apes" and "Dallas Buyers Club," he’s coming home to Minnesota to get one anyway.
The Twin Cities Film Fest will honor him Sept 6. at the organization's annual Festival Preview Gala, which opens the new TCFF season. Zahn, who was born in Marshall, and grew up in Mankato and New Hope, says it seems immature.
“I don’t think of myself like I’m 50, you know?” he said by phone. He is.
“Inside the business, it’s odd to look back and go, ‘I guess I have worked for a while and I have quite a resume’” in film and TV. Still, he does feel odd to “go to a set and being like, the oldest guy. It’s weird. It seems to have happened overnight. But then I think it wasn’t that long ago, like 1850, when I’d be dead.“
Be reassured, fans, that he plans to keep acting “until I drop. It’s the only thing I can do other than trim trees and dig holes. It was either that or be an outfitter at the Boundary Waters. For real.”
“The beauty of acting is that it’s not like most other jobs. Parts don’t dry up, they just redefine themselves. You go from playing the stoner to playing the principal. Pretty soon I’ll be playing some old guy. It reinvents itself all the time and it’s kind of exciting. ‘Oh, I get to play that now.’ But on another level, it’s a bummer. ‘Oh, wait. Damnit, I can’t play Hamlet. I’m way too old.’”
“Then all of a sudden things start grinding in your head and you’re looking for the next story, the next character. And then it gets exciting the same way as when you got your first gig.”
He tries to take it all in stride. His ABC series, “The Crossing,” where he was cast as a small town sheriff facing a doomsday scenario, debuted in March and was not renewed. “If it was picked up, great! If it wasn’t, great! I get to stay home and relax.”
Zahn and other honorees will be in attendance to receive their awards at the dinner, hosted Sept 6. at the Metropolitan Ballroom, 5418 Wayzata Blvd, Golden Valley. Limited tickets remain at www.twincitiesfilmfest.org. All proceeds go to support TCFF’s programming and educational events.