Tee Off: Olmos, Lopez Shine In ‘Walking With Herb’
As theaters start to reopen, “Walking With Herb” will lift spirits and touch hearts.
Joe Amable-Amo (Olmos) is a bank executive and former amateur golfer, who endures two deaths, including his 2-year-old granddaughter, and has lost all hope and joy. Not even his wife, played by Kathleen Quinlan, can lift his spirits.
Help comes his way via God’s eccentric messenger, Herb (Lopez). Herb explains to Joe that he has been chosen to inspire the world and play in a world championship golf tournament.
With a bit of prodding from Herb and the fact the cash prize will allow Joe to help his daughter save her child-care business, he agrees. The golf lessons from Herb, which help Joe win the tournament, take him out of his grim existence.
“It is the best chemistry I’ve ever had [on screen] since ‘Stand and Deliver,’” Olmos said.
Tony winner and Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Mark Medoff wrote the role of Joe especially for Olmos. Then Lopez came on board, and with the addition of Academy Award-nominated Kathleen Quinlan, the trio was in place.
Olmos said he learned golf tips from Lopez. “He actually did teach me how to play,” Olmos said. “George is a brilliant golfer. He’s been playing golf since 1981. But I’ll tell you right now; he’s a better actor than he is a golfer.”
“’Walking With Herb’ is the right movie at the right time,” said Fathom Events CEO Ray Nutt. “As we emerge from a challenging year, we could all use a film that uplifts, entertains and reminds us of what is possible.”
Optimism Entertainment and Rio Road Entertainment produced “Walking With Herb,” while Ross Kagan Marks directed it. Fathom Events will distribute.
(Edited by Gabriela Alejandra Olmos and Fern Siegel)