Adrien Brody on Predators
By Fred Topel | Image property of 20th Century Fox
A lot has been made of Oscar winner Adrien Brody starring in Predators. I mean, it hasn’t stopped Jodie Foster or Matt Damon. In fact, don’t you want to see an actor like that battle predators?
Adrien Brody on Predators
“I felt that it was important that that character be intimidating, as well, even though it was very comical,” Brody said. “It is a fine line. You have opportunities with certain lines that you have to be playful with, but for the most part you need to reign it in and be sincere. You can’t be an external thing or else it feels like an external thing, unless that’s the whole tone of something you are doing, but that hasn’t appealed to me just yet. I haven’t found a role that spoke to me like that. Also I want to create a character that young people today can relate to, that they can believe in, that’s not superficial and not a superhero, but someone who is flawed and tragic.”
That doesn’t mean just bulking up, although he did that too. “Thank you for pointing out there is more to it than physical abilities. They do go hand in hand. It is an interesting thing and it’s always surprising to me how much of it is an emotional, psychological transformation ensues with the physical transformation. I experienced that with The Pianist. Obviously, if you feel strong and look good, your confidence level grows and vice versa. In addition to feeling strong, I had restricted my diet in a way, and kind of my lifestyle, in an effort to kind of harness everything that I had in my power to be ferocious and keep that contained. For the first time since college, I had lifted really heavy weights to put on size. I think that is a very different workout process that I’m used to, and that creates additional testosterone. Your body chemistry changes.”
Nimrod Antal and Robert Rodriguez originally offered a supporting role. He wanted to play the lead, so it was tailored to him and the other role was ultimately dropped. “There was interest in another role that didn’t appeal to me. I look at this as an opportunity to do something really special within a type of film that I love, and that I feel sometimes historically Hollywood has had an overreliance on physical brawn as a way to portray a strong man, but that strength has to come from within. I felt that it was very important, especially in today’s audiences with young people. We are all, unfortunately, very familiar with what young soldiers look like and they are not dissimilar to my build. I think military leadership comes from a tactical and technical confidence and skill set and an intellectual strength and a self-reliance, and all these qualities that do make him a leader. Yes, I did feel like I had to make a physical transformation because I think on one level it is exciting for an audience to see that and I like to see that. I like to see, even if the character is villainous, a heroic character look strong, but I didn’t want to rely on that transformation for me to convey what I feel is necessary in portraying a leading man in a film.”
Inside Royce’s head were all the actor tricks Brody knows. “I spent a lot of time cultivating the qualities I felt Royce would possess, that put him in a leadership position. I poured over military manuals and field guides. I was also reading Sun Tsu, and another kind of eastern philosophy. Just as much as I could to kind of create someone who has a sense of control, awareness, awareness in the moment, and the ability to not let the fear that would naturally ensue to not let that paralyze him, but to actually propel him into being a warrior and the way you have that is from technical and tactical prowess. I thoroughly enjoyed playing Royce. Again, part of the attraction is I’m often drawn to material that affects me on an emotional level and the characters are dealing with things that are challenging and that I would question and things that I’m not necessarily familiar with. What I loved about Royce was that he had this emotional hardness that most of the characters that I’ve played don’t come close to possessing, and that’s an interesting state of mind to cultivate and stay in.”
Predators is out in theaters now.
For the trailers, review and more movie info, go to the Predators Movie Page.
Sources: Image property of 20th Century Fox
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