For those of you that didn’t spend you high school years watching Paul Wesley on Everwood or American Dreams, The Vampire Diaries is probably what first brought the actor to your television screens. After landing the role of Stefan in 2009, the Polish heartthrob quickly became one of the hottest young faces on TV.

Though Paul has starred in his fair share of films, it’s television that’s shaped his career — until now. After several less-than-successful movies like Baytown Outlaws and Beneath the Blue, Paul is stepping up his game with the Shawn Christensen-directed drama Before I Disappear. The film follows a character named Richie who, at the lowest point in his life, gets a call from his estranged sister asking him to babysit his niece.

Before I Disappear is a feature-length adaptation of the short film Curfew, for which Shawn won an Oscar in 2013. The movie stars Paul as Gideon, Shawn as Richie, and Emmy Rossum as sister Maggie. Paul is also credited as a producer on the film.

Shawn’s Oscar win definitely gives us high hopes for the feature, as does the fact that it made its premiere at the South by Southwest media festival in Austin, Texas. Paul stepped out to promote the film on Monday, March 10, taking part in a Q&A session at the Alamo Ritz.

If the first review is any indication, it sounds like Shawn could be looking at another Oscar! According to Film Threat (which rated the movie with a whopping 5 stars!), “the script is beautifully written with realistic dialogue that never misses a beat. [...] It is wonderful to see the superbly talented Paul Wesley step outside of his Vampire Diaries character to explore the multi-faceted Gideon.”

Congrats to Paul and the cast on such a stellar review!