“What If”: Daniel Radcliffe on the promotion trail – plus interview on “Seth Meyers”!
Daniel Radcliffe has been busy recently promoting new movie What If on TV, in interviews, by introducing special screenings, and more. Here’s a roundup of some of the recent highlights:
On Milk Made, Daniel talked about chemistry with Zoe Kazan on What If and working with James McAvoy on Frankenstein. On chemistry with Zoe:
We’re quite similar in that we’re both quite bookish and nerdy and probably have the same sense of humor. Also we both have a background in theater. Chemistry comes down to when you’re off set, and you’re chatting and getting to know each other and then being curious and interested. When I was doing Kill Your Darlings all the people in that group had to really form a gang and seem like they were really best mates. So we all made an effort. We all came to set being like, we’re going to hang out and get to know each other and form some of those relationships so that they at least slightly mirror what they are in the film. And I think it’s the same with [What If], not just with myself and Zoe but [also] with me and Adam [Driver], me and Mackenzie [Davis]. Just having that general attitude, ‘I’m going to come to set and be a part of the set’ rather than ‘I’m going to come to set and isolate myself in my trailer.’ It creates a different atmosphere. If Zoe or I had been unwilling to enter into it then I’m sure our chemistry would have been awful.
On the tips he’s picked up over the years thanks to his Potter days:
Me and Mackenzie had a moment when we were walking to the stage together for the first time in one of the scenes, and she was like, ‘That’s cool, I’ve never been on a sound stage before,’ and I was like ‘What, really?’ I forget that not everyone’s been on sound stages since they were eleven. The cameraman on Frankenstein said something to me that made my day ‘cause he said [that] myself and James McAvoy are two of the most technical actors that he’s ever worked with. He said, ‘We can direct you in inches,’ because I’m really good at my technical side and finding the light and doing all that sort of stuff. But I think the great thing about acting is as your life changes and as you grow up and live more of your life you just get more and more to draw from, and hopefully, I should just keep getting better as I get older. That’s the theory.
On James McAvoy:
The thing everyone said to me about James before I worked with him was, ‘Oh, I think you’ll like him, you’re quite similar,’ so I was very flattered by that. I would put it out there as a warning to other actors who work with James: I’m very lucky because I like the physical side of my job – I like being thrown around, I like being beaten up, I rarely like using pads – and James likes it too. He’s an incredibly physical actor. So I would say to anyone who’s going to work with him, ‘just buy some armor first.’
In Nylon Magazine, Daniel spoke about New York, food in America, and the natural dialogue in What If. On the relaxed atmosphere on set, Daniel said,
It was really fun. Normally I do films where it ends up getting really intense, and I have to cry or be covered in blood or mud or something, and there was none of that on this. I just had to go to work and make Zoe Kazan laugh everyday. There’s something great about that. It was a fantastic shoot, and there was a genuine sense of kind of sadness from the cast and crew when it was over. Like, ‘Oh, we’ve go to go onto other films now and do that.’
On the dialogue:
I think so often in romantic comedies, the characters just exist in a vacuum, and also Zoe said a really cool thing the other day, like, ‘I think most of the time in romantic comedies you have two kind of quite bland leads that are surrounded by their crazy friends.’ In this case I’d like to think Zoe and I are as interesting as the people around us are. As you say, they’re all real people who you can imagine meeting and hanging out with and liking. And I think part of that is actually we did improvise a lot on the film, and Michael, our director, encouraged us to do that because it does make for very natural dialogue.
On New York he said,
It’s New York. Completely, it really is. I love it here. I also love San Francisco, and I visited it twice, and I’ve had great times both times. But in terms of a place I could see myself spending a lot of time one day, it would be New York– it’s always been such a welcoming city to me. I feel like you don’t have to be from New York to be a New Yorker. There’s so many people who come here from other places but absolutely are New Yorkers. So yeah, I love it. I miss it when I’m not here.
Daniel also attended the Ivy Innovator Awards this week, where he introduced a special screening of What If, AND he appeared on Late Night with Seth Meyers! Daniel talked about enjoying the change of pace in What If and much more. Check out the first part of the interview here:
What If is out this month. Are you looking forward to seeing it? Or have you seen it already?