The Book of Daniel Radcliffe

The versatile young actor tells The Advocate about his return to the supernatural genre, what drew him to play Allen Ginsberg, and why he’s tirelessly committed to the Trevor Project.

BY Jeremy Kinser

May 29 2012 1:26 PM ET

The Woman in Black certainly shares qualities with that film.
When I read the script I thought of that film immediately and James Watkins felt the same. He also had a Spanish film called The Orphanage in his mind when he was conceiving this film. Having the chance to make one of those unusual, suspenseful, atmospheric, scary ... There’s a difference between a nasty film and a scary film. Of course films like Hostel and Saw are going to be horrifying because they’re unpleasant and there’s gruesome imagery involved. You’d be inhuman not to have some reaction to that. But with a film like this, it taps into things we have evolved to fear: darkness, noises we can’t identify the source of, those things that really scare us in real life. It all adds up to make a really effective, very scary film, I think. It also touches on family, loss, grief, and things you might not normally associate with a horror film.

You mentioned the 1946 fantasy A Matter of Life and Death. I’m impressed that you’re so film-literate.
That’s my favorite film. There are gaps in my film knowledge. I’ve never seen Star Wars and stuff like that. But A Matter of Life and Death I think is one of the greatest showings of what imagination in cinema can do, with no visual effects, really. It was a brilliant story and brilliantly acted. David Niven is the most impossibly charming man in the world in that film and always. It’s just a brilliant film.

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