Celebrity Interviews: Denzel Washington on "Out of Time"




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Denzel Washington stars in this romantic thriller as a small town cop who finds himself set up for a crime that he must solve before his coworkers suspect and arrest him.

Denzel Washington talks about the film:

What did you bring to this role?

I’m just playing a part. I’m not thinking what do I want to bring to it. I don’t think of it like that. When I sign on I go to work. I try to interrupt the part. That’s what I bring to it. My interpretation

Director Carl Franklin said you wouldn’t be looking at this [film] unless he was involved?

That’s probably true. But he was already involved. When I read the script, we had work to do still. And the fact that it was him and we worked well together in "Devil in a Blue Dress," and he really did the writing in Devil in Blue Dress. But it was a good process. So I knew that we would have a good experience.

Did your wife ever talk to you about the love scenes?

No. When we did "Mississippi Masala" I made the mistake of not showing her the film and we went to the premiere. That wasn’t good day. I guess because, and she has already seen this film months ago, because I guess she feels that she should know before ...people who are snickering or whatever their response is. I guess that can be personal or painful. So I told her what was going on while we were shooting and she saw the film maybe in January.

This is a guy who gives into temptation, who gets into a lot of trouble. As far as we know, and the tabloids seem to support it that you are immune to…

No. Nobody is immune to temptation. Come on. I’m a human being like anyone else. And I don’t read the tabloids. What do they say?

They say you’re a good guy.

They hail ya, and then they nail ya. So sooner or later they’ll be coming my way.

But, I mean you really are a strait shooter.

You know. I’m an actor and I’m a human being and like I said, they hail ya, then they nail ya. People say well you’re this…Hey don’t put that on me. You don’t know me. You know the parts I play. I played Stephen Biko. I’m not Stephen Biko. I played Malcolm X. I’m not Malcolm X. I love my family. My family is first. And that’s it.

What do you make of the age difference and this is me confusing me you Denzel with Matt and that’s not fair, because I think that you play Matt as.…

Even though I’m old enough to be their father is that what you mean? We were in interviews yesterday, and one lady kept harping on it. Kept going, ‘I don’t think it’s right. I don’t think it’s right. I said, ‘well I’m getting to do a movie the Manchurian Candidate and Meryl Streep is going to play Liev Schreiber’s mom And I know she’s not old enough to be his mom, and so she not get the part? Should it be someone who is old enough? It’s funny how that works. It’s convenient when it needs to be. I don’t know how much older she is than him. But lets it’s 10 years. Do we than say, ‘Oh, No! It’s got to be a women who is 25 years older than him because that’s what it’s got to be.’ Now if I was 71 and we got Sanaa and Eva and unless the film is about that, then I think that would be a little strang.

Were there issues about putting you in more casual clothes and having Eva for instance in business dress and dressed a bit older?

If it was, I didn’t know about that. Maybe, but nobody told me.

When I said to Eva, isn’t Denzel about 20 years older, she just laughed

How old is she? Did she say? We’ll I’m older that both of them put together. [He laughed] But you know what, just to go back to Eva, Carl called me and said, "You know, I got the girl. I think she’s great but I just want to run it by you." I said, "Who?" He said, "Eva." I said, "Oh, yeah, she is great." So I had nothing to do with that decision in the casting process other than signing off on it.

How is it hanging from the balcony?

Sort of like the sex scenes. I had this strap…harness on so when you fall over the side and your voice goes a little higher. It was really clever filmmaking. The illusion. They build the railing so that it fall over. And I’m like test that thing. Over and over. There’s a couple of shot that started with me laying on it and they let it go and I drop over the side. But the camera…there’s a shot where the two of us go over and the camera goes over with us it almost make the audience feel like they’re being dragged to.

Once the conspiracy kicked in you really had to maintain this frantic energy about the character. It looked like it was exhausting.

Some of that stuff was the most frustrating to do because. First of all I didn’t like being in that position. I gotta worry for 14 hours day or be nervous. And also, and Carl told me this ahead of time, there was so much bits and pieces. He said, we’re not going to shoot all the scene in order, or it’s not a full scene, we’re going to get this piece, get that piece because he needs all the pieces. Yu see a look. You see that fax machine, you see the fingers, you see the wife looking at me. So it’s not like you have two minutes to give us the whole scene. It’s like pieces and pieces and pieces. It’s really Carl building the film.

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