Daniel Radcliffe on How He Played Dead in ‘Swiss Army Man’

daniel radcliffe swiss army man

“You just sort of have to use your imagination when you’re playing something that doesn’t exist.” – Daniel Radcliffe

In what might be the most bizarre film of 2016, Swiss Army Man stars Daniel Radcliffe as a super-powered dead body who is used by a man (Paul Dano) to survive on a deserted island. However, as crazy of a concept as it sounds, Radcliffe didn’t spend the entire film without moving. Speaking with the New York Times, Radcliffe notes some of the techniques that went into bringing a dead body to, uh, life.

Radcliffe admits it takes some mental effort to play such an offbeat role. He explains, “You just sort of have to use your imagination when you’re playing something that doesn’t exist. But that’s a good thing. As long as you’re giving the directors what they want, there’s no really wrong answer.”

Playing a dead body gave Radcliffe some challenges, particularly with the voice. He reveals, “I started out wheezy, like if a bellows had a voice box. Then I had to imagine that rigor mortis has set in, so his jaw is kind of stiff but starts loosening up as he comes more to life.”

He also came up with a facial expression that would leave one eye nearly shut and the other wide open. He says, “I came up with [that] when I was playing around with stupid facial expressions in the mirror. I thought it was [something] everybody could do, but when I showed it to the directors, they were like, do that!”

But otherwise, Radcliffe had to remain very, very still. Though challenging, Radcliffe knew how important it was, explaining, “There’s really no trick. You just do it. There was also an element of not wanting to [mess up] the take and ruin Paul’s beautiful performance.”

Leave a Reply

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/laura-linney-genuis.jpg
Laura Linney: “The thing that makes the theater different from any other art form: it’s time”
Linney cast's some light on why revivals in theater are looked at differently than their television and film counterparts.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/corey-hawkins.jpg
Corey Hawkins: “I grew up a theater nerd”
"The fun of it and the challenge of it is to take the play — to take the text — and make it your own, to find it your own way" - Corey Hawkins on Theater
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/sally-field-the-glass-menagerie.jpg
Sally Field on Performing on Broadway: “You’re so totally and utterly and completely alive”
Field reveals how the lack of intermission helps her maintain her energy and why she decided to return to Broadway after a nearly 15-year break.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/watch-sag-conversations-with-geo.jpg
Watch: SAG Conversations with Geoffrey Rush of ‘Genius’
Rush speaks at length about his career and portraying who many consider to be the wisest man of the 20th century.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Ben-Platt-Dear-Evan-Hansen.jpg
Ben Platt on How He Found Himself Starring in ‘Dear Evan Hansen’
"Every day is a different sort of vibe and feeling. It can be impacted by anything from like, "Is it raining outside?" to "Are there a lot of old people?"" - Ben Platt