The movie is quite literally about a lonely, mid-40s New Yorker who inherits a cobbling machine that allows him to transform into whomever's shoes he's repairing, therefore allowing him to fight Lower East Side gentrification, all while paying homage to Jewish tradition. (No, we're not joking.) So when MTV News caught up with Sandler and the film's director, Thomas McCarthy, we just had to ask -- "WTF?"
"When Paul [Sado] and I started writing this story, my office is in the Lower East Side, and we were just kind of writing what was around us," McCarthy replied, referring to the rapidly rising property values in that newly gentrified neighborhood. "We started with this character of Max Simpkin -- we had our eye set early on Adam, and didn't know if we'd ever actually get him, but we thought, let's write it, and when we approach him and he says 'no' we'll get Paul Giamatti."
As for Sandler, he wanted to take on the role of Simpkin because the character -- and the character's lifestyle, friends, and family -- reminded him of growing up in Brooklyn.
"[I was drawn to] McCarthy, the story, the connection to the neighborhood and my family," Sandler said. "It felt like a relationship I've seen with friends and my family, or cousins. It's just very New York. It can be a secluded life when you're just taking care of mama, and you have nothing else. No social life, no anything. Just work and mom and work and mom. It was just nice to see this guy try to get something else."
"The Cobbler" hits theaters on March 13.