This Monday “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” celebrated its New York premiere.
Was there any improvisation?
There is a sense of improvisation allowed, but only within a certain box. It’s not just like ok go crazy do whatever you want, if you step outside the box, he’ll come in and say, ‘alright go back to what we were saying before.’ I think he prefers if we improvise within rehearsals.
What was your trickiest stunt?
Trickiest stunt was saving Illya from under water. There was a big old breath hold, wasn’t very easy.
How was it working with Armie?
Armie’s great, lovely guy, full of energy and great actor.
What did you like about working with Guy Ritchie?
His intelligence and just the quality of man that he is.
Did you have fun on set?
I loved it, if I could do a “Man from U.N.C.L.E.” movie forever more then I’d be happy.
What do you want audiences to take away from this?
I want them to have enjoyed the ride, that’s the whole point. You’re supposed to be enjoying yourselves. We’re not taking ourselves too seriously and neither should you.
One thing that’s really special about the film is the fashion, can you speak about that?
It’s the ‘60s and the ‘60s have a very particular look, so it was fun to be wearing that kind of thing. I loved wearing those suits. I love a good three-piece suit, but I wouldn’t wear a ‘60s suit now.
Did you watch the “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” when you were a kid?
I didn’t watch it as a kid, but I went back and watched them all when I got hired. It’s great. It’s a fantastic and fun show and I see why we’re here making this movie. We were doing something different. We were doing something to pay respect and homage to the roots of the show, which are amazing and the reason that we’re here today is because the roots of the show were so good, but what we did was, we took those roots and completely modernized them. We made a Guy Ritchie movie out of it. Which is very different and we basically stayed true to the tone he was looking for and what was on the script.
How much improvisation did you do?
There wasn’t a ton that was just improv after improv, but it was free. It was a very collaborative set. If you changed a line or did something different, it was never ‘hey, wait no you changed a line,’ it was always ‘was it funnier than the line?’ If so then great, if not, don’t do it again.
Can you speak about collaborating with Guy and what makes him so brilliant?
Collaborating with Guy is a dream. He’s one of the most collaborative directors I’ve ever worked with and the thing that makes him unique is his pace and how he’s just relaxed and gets everything done more quickly than you think things are moving, which is a very impressive quality.
Can you speak about collaborating with Henry?
Fantastic, what’s not to love? You’ve seen the guy, he looks like chiseled of marble.
How did you train for the authentic russian accent?
Youtube. Any video I could find with native Russians speaking english or speaking broken english, anything I could to just hear how they say the letter “u” and just kind of picking the sounds that are very russian to me.
Do you have any stories you can share about Guy?
Yeah, I have many stories about Guy. He was willing to play the banjo on set I remember doing one scene where I did about six takes and I would stop and all I would hear is the banjo in the background and I would yell out onto set, ‘Guy did you think it was ok?’ and I just hear ‘yeah it was great’. That was our relationship, it was very casual, but he knows exactly what he wants so you trust him.
Do you have any driving scenes?
I’ve got some driving scenes. I‘ve got some scenes on a boat and I’ve got some new shooting scenes.
No, it all went down very smoothly.
Did you like the decade?
It was an amazing decade for women, I think this film really embodies that with two really strong female characters and the costumes were incredible and the music is fantastic. If I could step back in time I’d love to spend a weekend in the ‘60s.
Can you speak about working with Guy and his vision?
Guy is an incredible filmmaker and I think he’s very unique. He’s very confident in the film he wants to make, so you trust him inherently and you just sort of free fall and do what you wanna do when he directs you. You improvise a lot and it’s a really great set to work on.
Speak about what you love about this character?
I love his sense of style and his ideas and what he stands for. He’s an interesting. He’s trying ot make a name for himself after his father was such a bad guy, so at the end it’s like we’re all trying to please our parents, no matter how evil we are.
Can you speak about collaborating with Guy?
You gotta see this movie. The biggest character in the movie is Guy Ritchie because he brings the irony and transforms the genre. He gives it that irony that speed and that dynamic that only Guy Ritchie can bring to a picture.