Jesse Eisenberg Talks ‘Now You See Me’ and Tackling Stage Fright

jesse-eisenberg-now-you-see-meJesse Eisenberg is one of those actors who actually admits to having stage fright.  Luckily, his role in the new film, Now You See Me, helped him get over his fear.

“I was doing a play in New York, Asuncion, and I had a lot of stage fright and anxiety about performing in it,” he said in an interview with Moviefone.  “When I read the script, the character they wanted me to play was the most confident, almost arrogant, stage performer, and I thought, ‘Oh, this will be a great opportunity to live out all the things I was denying myself in the play.’  I got to perform on stage and feel great about it instead of feeling nervous about it, and so I fully embraced that part of the character.”

In the film, Eisenberg plays an illusionist who teams up with four other magicians to rob a bank.  The role actually ended up helping his performances onstage.  “I just finished my second play, The Revisionist, with Vanessa Redgrave, and I was a little more confident doing it,” he said.  “I mean, incrementally, but more so, nonetheless.  I realized that you can choose to feel confident about it or not, but that’s not necessarily related to how the show goes.  You can feel excited all day about performing at night or you can feel miserable all day about it and the show might not be that different.  Why ruin your days feeling miserable about something that can possibly go really well?

“I write these plays and it’s very important for me to get them produced.  The first play I did, I had to really push along so it’s a battle in me of wanting to avoid doing it because it scares me—wanting to get my plays out there and express myself.  I’m getting a little more confident as I do each play.”

Eisenberg never gets anxious when costarring with Woody Harrelson (who also appeared in Zombieland with the actor.)  “We have a similar style of working,” he explained.  “We like to come up with back stories for our character.  And we both really like improvisation and we both play off each other, since we have a similar sense of humor.  I have a lot of respect for him because he really takes it seriously.”

Now You See Me is in theaters now.

Leave a Reply
Matthew McConaughey Reveals How He Came Up With His Catchphrase, ‘Alright, alright, alright!’
"My character, David Wooderson, he has three lines in the entire film. Alright, but one of those lines is what I like to call a launch pad line." - Matthew McConaughey
Jennifer Jason Leigh on ‘The Hateful Eight’, Quentin Tarantino and Playing People in “Extreme Circumstances”
Jennifer Jason Leigh: "I think that's an incredible thing that we can do as actors—to feel empathy toward someone that you may otherwise detest, you know?”
Ian McKellen on Working with Child Actors and How He Transitioned from a Stage Actor to a Screen Actor
"And I think when I decided to become professional, my only aim, really, was to get better as an actor." - Ian McKellen
New ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time’ Star Tyler Lea on Taking Over from a Tony Award Winner
"I haven't done a whole lot. This is my first huge thing. This is my first bite. I was waiting it out and then I caught a really, really big fish." - Tyler Lea
Master of None’s Noël Wells Talks Positive Attitudes and Having Nothing To Lose
Noel Wells starring role alongside Aziz Ansari in his Netflix series, Master of None, has audiences in stitches
// BLOCK AD BLOCK SNIPPET Place this code snippet near the footer of your page before the close of the /body tag