The lovely folks at GQ sent us this press release for their interview with Star Wars: The Force Awakens star Oscar Isaac. We haven’t heard a lot from Isaac about his character Poe Dameron so I’m really enjoying these little tidbits as we count down the last few days until The Force Awakens! Some of you will really enjoy the accompanying photos with the article so go read it!
OSCAR ISAAC ON HIS STAR WARS’ CHARACTER, THE SEQUELS, AND RELIGION
New York, N.Y.—“J.J. basically told me it was an intense, heroic, dramatic character and he hadn’t seen me do that,” Oscar Isaac tells GQ’s Brett Martin of his first time reading from the Star Wars script for J.J. Abrams. “I didn’t know if I could make it interesting. I didn’t know why me and not anybody else.” Abrams sees it differently: “Oscar is a far more sophisticated actor than one might get for a role that could be looked at as just a daring, kick-ass pilot.”
So how did Star Wars compare to working on Llweyn Davis and Ex Machina? “I actually felt the most green and insecure than I had in a long time,” says Isaac of his latest role. “I was like, What am I doing here? There was a lot of room to shade in the character. Every time I tried to do that, it would slow things down too much. J.J. would be like, ‘Get on with it, man!’ Just, Louder! Faster! And then I would feel like I was doing that all the time. It felt weird and like I was not being creative. I would get nervous I wasn’t finding enough or I was missing an opportunity.”
When asked if the prospect of two more Star Wars movies causes him anxiety, Isaac brightens. “No! Because what’s so fun about it is…it’s all made-up! It’s all fucking made-up, but in a great way. We get to create it as we go.”
To see the full story, including the photos, shot by Nathaniel Goldberg, go to: http://www.gq.com/story/oscar-isaac-star-wars-the-force-awakens-interview
Isaac’s family moved to the U.S. from Guatemala when he was 5 months old. “For my father,” says Isaac, “individualism was very important, and he instilled that in me. It was way more important to recognize myself as an individual than as a part of a group. I wasn’t part of the ‘Latino community.’ I was just a kid in high school with friends, who was into playing music… I never thought of myself as an ethnic actor,” he adds. “I don’t feel comfortable saying I speak for Guatemalans. Or for Latino men. Or for Latin men that are five nine….”
On his religious family: “My dad was a man of extremes. And the way my mom was raised, she followed her husband. So if God spoke to my father one day and said we were not supposed to have a TV in the house, it was suddenly gone. The Hernandez home became the site of a kind of ongoing tent revival…. I was never frightened by it,” Isaac says of his father’s approach to religion. “I was more curious why I wasn’t feeling the real thing myself.”
After Isaac broke away from the Church, in what he calls a “slow amputation,” he began to find spiritual experiences in his acting methodology. “A director is always thinking, ‘What is the right combination of words that I can say that will unlock the right response in you? If I can say the right thing, it will unlock this thing in you, but if I say it wrong, the opposite with happen.’ Religion is a very similar thing. Like, somebody was meditating long enough that they put the right sentence together and thought, ‘If you say these words in exactly this way, you’ll know how to live, but you have to say it exactly like this.’ The problem is that it’s not always the same for everybody.”
The January issue of GQ will be available on newsstands in New York and L.A. on Tuesday, December 15th, and nationally on Tuesdsay, December 22nd.