Exclusive: Andrew Garfield (part 2)

Mimi ON Feb 02, 2011 AT 3:27 pm

Never Let Me Go

Carey Mulligan, Keira Knightley and Andrew Garfield in Never Let Me Go

Carey and Keira have been friends for a number of years. Did you know them before this?

Not at all. I was extremely excited to meet and work with both of them. They’ve obviously been friends since Pride & Prejudice, really, really close, and you can feel a warmth between them and a real sisterly energy. I was like, That’s okay, that’s fine, I felt I’d like to be involved in that but that’s probably how Tommy feels as well. But very quickly the dynamic felt really right and warm between all three of us. I felt very invited into the fold and included and it wasn’t awkward at all, and even if I wasn’t, it would have been because Tommy’s a bit of a fucking loner, anyway. But [they’re] wonderful people, really genuine, brilliant, down to earth girls. They just want to do good work, and they really care, as I do, about using whatever they have to offer to tell a really, amazingly beautiful story.

You’ve had to go on a special diet for the completion scenes?

Yeah. I’m really up for exploring the limits of sacrifice that I can give, just as a kind of experiment, but I’m actually struggling with not eating. I love eating I’ve discovered, like more than anything in the world. But not just eating, like eating chocolate and sauces and burgers and deep fried shit. I’m thinking of fasting before we start the completion thing, and I’m going to shave my head, to look sad and like a shell. But it’s really tough. I need to get more disciplined with not eating.

Andrew Garfield, Carey Mulligan and Keira Knightley at the BFI Film Festival

Andrew Garfield, Carey Mulligan and Keira Knightley at the BFI Film Festival

Like Carey, you spent time on set whilst the younger actors were filming as well as during rehearsals. Why was it important for you to do that?

Alex [Garland] put it beautifully: to draw an inner piece of string between me and my younger self, Charlie [Rowe], who’s a really good actor. Actually he’s brilliant, if there’s anyone in danger of being upstaged by their younger self, it’s me, because he’s extremely good. So just holding on to that contact, and holding on to little mannerisms and little physical tics, so there is a link through. It felt important, and from a very selfish perspective it’s always very sad when you have to leave a story behind and leave playing these people behind and there was a way of extending that. I was also just really excited to watch and be involved in any way I could be involved in young Tommy’s life. I think the actors playing the younger versions of the characters appreciated it as well.

You mention it was all about the story and there seems to be a real sense of everyone involved in the film doing their best to respect and protect the source material.

It’s this incredible metaphor for all our lives and this massive existential question mark — what do you do with the time you have? — and when a script like that comes along you do everything in your power to be a part of that story and if you are lucky enough to be a part of it, you relish every second. And you cherish every second. It’s difficult to find purpose as an actor because there are very few things that are actually of genuine importance that get made in film, and when one of those stories comes along that connects, it becomes pure joy every day.

Never Let Me Go opens cinemas nationwide 11th February 2011.

Watch the trailer below:

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