Monday, December 17, 2007

Michael Stahl-David Interviews

As January 18, 2008 draws ever closer, Paramount will surely make a push to get all the free publicity they can. Friday brought us four seperate interviews from Cloverfield director Matt Reeves. Earlier today, Sci Fi Wire interviewed producer Bryan Burk.

MTV and IESB interview Michael Stahl-David (he plays Rob) about Cloverfield. Be warned, there are some mild spoilers.

About Rob:

So, Rob is a 20-something guy who is not a very extraordinary guy. He kind of has amounted to about as much as people thought he would. But now he’s got this great offer for a job in Japan so he’s gonna leave his friends and this girl that he’s always kind of been in love with but has been too afraid to do anything about and go to Japan. And that’s what the movie is about, at the beginning. We’re seeing a going away party for him. When catastrophe strikes, things become clear kind of quickly what’s important to him. Then he spends the rest of this movie trying to get to this girl.

Who is in the film:
"[My character] is someone who's not a big risk-taker or somebody who's very spontaneous," Stahl-David revealed. "And then there's Hud, the man behind the camera [played by T.J. Miller], who's loud and funny but not the most tactful guy, definitely — he really cares about his friends. Then there's Lizzy Caplan [as Marlena], who randomly gets stuck with us — she's not in our close circle of friends ... she's the outsider in our midst. Then there's Jessica Lucas [as Lily], who is the caretaker of my brother Jason [Mike Vogel], who is wild and reckless. She's the only reason he keeps his sh-- together.
"Then there's Beth [Odette Yustman], [and] I've always felt like there's something there between us," he explained. "We've been friends for a long time, but whenever I'm single, she's been seeing somebody and vice versa. We've never really connected, until a few weeks before the tape begins to roll — but I'm leaving, so it was just going to end where it was."

Acting opposite the monster:
In certain scenes, if you could physicalize something, it would give the animators something to do. Give them something to play off of really strong. Normally in a scene, you’re thinking about what you give your scene partner to play off of, but in this there was this invisible scene partner that if you did some big motion that was really going to help them, you know, it might feel ridiculous for you, in the moment, to do it but it was really to help them.

The monster is scary looking:
We got to see renderings that they had on the computers and, in one case, a really amazing model. A wax model they had built that looked just terrifying. So we had somewhat of sense. We got to know the style. But they were good about that. Of letting us have some idea of what it was going to be.

(Possible Spoilers)

Slusho! may be more than a drink:
"The concept of Slusho! is something that I'm not at liberty to discuss," he recited robotically, only half-kidding. "I think [my character] might've been better off if he found some Slusho! [during the attack], but that would've been too much like Popeye eating his can of spinach."

The end of the movie:
We did, however, learn that the monster is not named in the movie ("We took to calling it Clover ... when the movie comes out, people are gonna name it"); that Cloverfield contains Speed-like nonstop scenes as high-adrenaline as the clip ("There's a couple points where we can't run anymore and we have to sit with ourselves, but other than that, the movie is about you being with us, and us trying to survive"); and that a climactic scene takes place in the NYC subway system.
"The whole scene in the subway," Stahl-David said when asked for his favorite moment. "Once we go in there and get stuck and have to walk through those tunnels ... it's not a nice place to be ... I can't wait for the world to see that, and to hear their reactions."