Is anyone else as big a J.K. Simmons fan as I am? The guy was priceless as the dad in Juno and memorable as one of George Clooney’s firees in Up in the Air. Now he’s got a juicy starring role in The Music Never Stopped, a Sundance film that was picked up by Roadside Attractions before the festival. In the touching drama, Simmons and Cara Seymour (An Education) play parents who try to reconnect with their son (Lou Taylor Pucci) who ran away 20 years ago after he ends up at the hospital with a brain tumor and a case of amnesia. It’s only through music (and his musical therapist, Julia Ormond) that Pucci’s character is able to remember events and feelings from his earlier life.

After so many great supporting roles, it’s terrific to see Simmons carry a film. He’s aided by a plethora of period wigs, but he imbues his character with an understated honesty that’s a pleasure to watch. Simmons, Pucci, Seymour, Ormond, and director Jim Kohlberg stopped by our EW photo studio to chat about the film.