“That Thing You Do’s Tom Everett Scott returns to the music scene: Forms a band with son Jon Bon Jovi”

“That Thing You Do’s Tom Everett Scott returns to the music scene: Forms a band with son Jon Bon Jovi”

The star of the iconic ’90s film plays an ’80s hair band star finding his way back to the spotlight in ‘Rockbottom’

<p>Courtesy of Zack Furnari</p> Tom Everett Scott and Toshi Yanagi of Rockbottom

Courtesy of Zack Furnari

Tom Everett Scott and Toshi Yanagi of Rockbottom
Almost 30 years after That Thing You Do, Tom Everett Scott is returning to his rock star roots.

The actor stars in the new film Rockbottom, which follows former ’80s hair band star Jesse Rockbottom as he reluctantly helps reunite his old CougarSnake crew for a performance.

“I was born in 1970 and was a teen through the ’80s — MTV came to my town and it was an entrance into music videos for me,” Scott, 53, tells PEOPLE. “The bands at the time were Bon Jovi and Guns N’ Roses, so this movie for me was a big dose of nostalgia.”

As he did with That Thing You Do, Scott learned to play an instrument for the film, this time the bass.

“We got up on stage, did our performance. It’s definitely fun to rock out on camera. And for me, for this movie, any opportunity to pretend to be a rock star is welcome,” he shares. “I think that’s always been kind of my dream, other than being an actor — if I had musical ability, I’d just want to be playing music on stage.”

His costar Jake Bongiovi knows a thing or two about that. The 21-year-old son of rocker Jon Bon Jovi and Dorothea Hurley makes his film debut in the movie, showcasing his own singing chops as the guy who might be able to step in as CougarSnake’s new frontman.

“He was a natural,” Scott says. “I don’t know how much he was drawing from his dad, but I did say like, ‘Hey, I saw your dad play at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse from the front row,’ and he loved that, he thought it was funny. And he told some very sweet stories about his dad.”

But Bongiovi — who is engaged to actress Millie Bobby Brown — “wants to be an actor,” Scott adds. “And he’s a good actor. So I think it’s a nice thing to see his career starting out because for me as an actor, I felt like we could talk about the process. And he’s pretty much the same age as my kids, so I could talk to him about TV shows my kids were watching that I love too.”

<p>Bleecker Street</p> Tom Everett Scott and McKaley Miller in 'Rockbottom'

That bond between Scott and his castmates — including McKaley Miller, Tesla Dunn and director Todd Tucker, a former ’80s rock star himself — made this a “reall great” experience for the star.

“I’ve done so many projects over the years and certain ones stick out as making me feel like I can’t wait to go to work,” he shares. “And this was one of them.”

Drawing on Tucker’s experiences as a singer and drummer for ’80s band Dreamer made the film “a love letter to that time period,” Scott adds. “I saw the joy he had and it was just fun to be around. He’s a very positive person and I think everyone experienced that on set.”

Rockbottom is streaming now on Prime Video.

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