October 18, 2009|When you're a stage actor who's suddenly found himself the lead in the new Coen Brothers picture and playing Arnold Rothstein on "Boardwalk Empire", Martin Scorsese's upcoming HBO series, you're more or less obliged to accept the mantle of Rising Star. There's no doubting this guy is going places. Yet A Serious Man's Michael Stuhlbarg is exceedingly modest in describing his craft, dismissing his own contributions with a day-job casualness that seems to leave the fancy artistic crap for his directors to figure out. All things considered, his superficial distance from in-depth discussion might be a consequence of the endless variations on "What's it like to work with the Coens?" or "What's it like working with Scorsese?" he'd undoubtedly been asked dozens of times before we met at Boston's Ritz-Carlton Hotel. Either that, or he's reluctant to put too fine a point on a profession (and a film) noted for its slippery nature.