October 11, 2018 at 12:00 PM EDT

George Hardy has an extremely weird career. He’s mostly a dentist, but also an actor, notably and gamely starring alongside Michael Stephenson as a goblin-battling dad in Claudio Fragasso’s berserk 1990 horror-comedy Troll 2.

“It was a three-week shoot for me,” Hardy told EW in 2010. “I would kind of alternate days of going into my dental practice and then going out and shooting on this set, and meeting all these Italians, very few of them spoke English. Michael and myself would sit over in the corner and try to decipher it. The way it was written was not the way Americans speak. One of us would say, ‘Claudio, this is not the way we relate to each other.’ But they would say, ‘No, no, no, this is the way you do it!’ We just did what we were told. How can you argue with someone who doesn’t understand what you’re saying?”

How indeed.

Hardy has now returned to the world of film with the thriller Texas Cotton, a tale of small-town crime and justice from Austin-based filmmaker Tyler Russell. The movie is set in the once-thriving town of La Coste, which is suffering a seemingly endless crop plague. Travis Delmore (Hardy), an aging lawman who’s seen his community go from boom to bust in less than a decade, watches helplessly as the remaining townsfolk curse their luck and resign themselves to a bleak future. Everything changes when he arrests Joe (Lew Temple), a mysterious stranger who is caught “spraying things” and claims he’s been hired to revive the town’s farmland. As Joe’s story unravels, however, the mayor (Jason Douglas) soon suspects this outsider is responsible for causing the entire plague.

Texas Cotton costars Gene Jones, Tiffany Shepis, Judd Lormand, and Juliette Danielle. It will premiere at the Austin Film Festival on Oct. 28.

Watch an exclusive clip of Hardy in Texas Cotton above.

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