BuzzFocus recently had the chance to sit down with Safe House (starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds) Director Daniel Espinosa.
It was a more intimate press conference, and I use the word conference loosely. The PR team had setup an informal discussion with the gaming community and the director since the studio released a Facebook game based on the film. Although the discussion started out with the Facebook game, we quickly learned that Espinosa was not familiar with it. It was the first time he had heard about the game and exclaimed how “cool” it was for a game to be developed from his movie.
We then moved on to discuss his filmmaking process. Safe House is a gritty action film in the vein of the Bourne Identity. Washington plays Tobin Frost, a former government operative who has gone rogue. Tobin is taken to a Safe House, manned by Matt Weston (Reynolds), where he is interrogated. It’s a fast-paced action tale with a lot of great car chase scenes and a little bit of torture.
We’ve got the full recording of the press conference with Espinosa below. In it, he discusses the long lens documentary style he chose to use in making this film. He let us know that he was opposed to green screen and wanted to deliver as real a tale as possible, which is why he shot it in South Africa.
Espinosa gave us a taste of what it was like to work with Washington. He stated that younger actors were “terrified” of him because he is such a hard worker. Espinisa told us how integral the sound design and music was for creating the right ambiance for the film.
There’s some great insight into the actors as well as the director. Denzel actually let himself be tortured in one of the Chinese torture (water boarding) scenes. Espinosa let us know that he was prepared to use a stunt double but when they got to set, Denzel was ready to do it himself. Another reason, why he was impressed with how hard Denzel worked. Espinosa gave us his theory on rehearsals, opting to rehearse in public places rather than in a studio to add authenticity and sincerity to the dialogue. He did let us know that Denzel offered ad lib in a few key scenes.
Safe House opens in theaters on Feb 10.