It was up to director Michael Dowse to bring out the best in his cast, guide
the actors where needed and let them go where required. -I'm focused on the
narrative, making sure the story beats are working and that we're getting enough
topography - making sure that it's not just two people sitting around talking
but that we're also adding action, and ups and downs to the film, says the
director. -I'm focused on making the ride as interesting as it can be.
When I met Mike Dowse it was clear that he had a real vision for the movie.
He also let us play around and encouraged us to improvise, says Radcliffe.
As Dowse explains, everyone expected a great actor in Radcliffe but the level
of comedy he brought was a nice surprise. -Dan really is funny. Obviously it's a
comedy so we were looking for someone who could do comedy but he's surpassed my
expectations of how great he is on his feet, with improv and coming up with
great bits, says Dowse.
He's a very good leader on set and he has a sharp mind and quick wit and he
just kind of knows what he's doing, says Driver.
That's such a general thing
to say but it's hard to have someone who encompasses many skills and talents as
he does and be at ease with everything.
The whole thing feels very organic, says Kazan on acting with Radcliffe. -I
think Dan and I have a good connection and we're both bringing a lot of our own
personalities to the parts which is strangely hard to do - it's hard to feel
that relaxed but Dan helped me do that.
Since Kazan and Radcliffe's relationship is the heart of the film, their
chemistry was critical, and luckily they hit it off immediately.
She's amazing, says Radcliffe. -I had such a good time working with her on
this and I looked forward to acting with her every day.
Kazan returns the praise. -Dan is absolutely a joy to work with- so funny and
so smart and such a hard worker. I am like a crazy person when it comes to work.
I always want to be the first one on set and I always want to be like the
hardest working. And Dan leads me in every way. Although I show up early to set,
you know he's been there, for like four hours.
Kazan says the professionalism and camaraderie of the cast extended to the
whole group and helped create a great rapport between all the key characters in
film. -From the first day with Rafe I felt immediate ease and connection and I
felt able to tease and be teased, she says.
Kazan and Driver already knew each other from theater in New York so there
was already a comfort level there and Kazan says it was also fun to bond with
the circle of females in the cast including playing word games in her trailer
over lunch with Park. -There are a lot of young women in this movie as opposed
to many movies that have a bunch of dudes and one girl, she says.
Park says she and Kazan were able to create an interesting and strong
sisterly dynamic relatively easily, partially because Park actually has an older
sister and Kazan has a younger sister. -We instantly had good chemistry. I feel
like she's protective of me and I kind of look up to her so it just came really
naturally to us and it just feels really real on camera as well, Park says.
Davis also liked working with Kazan and Park. -Zoe is just the zestiest,
jumpiest, person who's also so smart and funny and is just this really sort of
spark plug of a person, -she says.
In fact, Davis says the atmosphere on set was so relaxed and convivial that
it was a bit like summer camp where the cast got to shoot scenes that were party
scenes or skinny dipping at the beach scenes that were for the movie, but were
also really fun and memorable moments.
All the actors credit Dowse's energy and directorial style with giving them
the freedom to concentrate on making each scene as real and funny as possible.
Michael is so great at creating this world where everyone feels that they
can try everything and fail, says Driver. -To get to go to a job where the
person in charge is telling you, I'm actually surrendering my control to you to
be able to think of a better idea or this script is what the guideline is and
just kind of go from there' is a specific trait and it's a good one to be able
to work with, I think.
When you're making a movie of this size, they try to do a lot in a little
amount of days but I never felt that crunch, says Kazan. -I think Mike really
took it on. He's like a great coach who motivates everybody to do their best and
he doesn't interfere when he feels like he doesn't have to, but then he just
sort of swoops in and fixes things when needed.
Dowse responds that all the cast was unnervingly professional; on time,
prepared, ready to work. -It places far too much pressure on the director, he
jokes. -You need at least one bad seed you can pin problems on during
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