SDCC: Drive Angry 3D Panel Report (Mania.com)
Date: Thursday, July 29, 2010
The Panel moderator for Drive Angry 3D introduced veteran 3D Director Patrick Lussier, (‘My Bloody Valentine’), who in turn invited Amber Heard, William Fichtner, and Nic Cage to join him onstage amidst warm applause from the SDCC Hall H crowd. Lussier began the panel discussion by explaining that the film was shot entirely in 3D, which presented its own set of unique filming challenges.
Nic Cage commented that he was drawn to the role because he was interested in 3D, and wanted to participate in a production that Lussier was leading, a director whom he considers to be a pioneer in the field. Additionally, Johnny Martin was attached, who Nic had a great experience working with on ‘Gone in 60 Seconds’. He shared that his characters mission was to save babies, and seek revenge on those who killed his daughter. He shared that filming in 3D was quite interesting, as it requires the actors to have a more … intimate relationship with the entire filming process. They had to always be conscious of the 3D aspects of their movements and their positions. This is entirely different than a normal film shoot, or when 3D is added in post production. He feels that the latest technological advances in the field of 3D have moved far beyond the productions of the past (which he never liked).
During the press conference that followed, Mania had the opportunity to ask Lussier to expand upon the challenges of filming an adrenalin fueled action movie, as opposed to the psychological thriller that was ‘My Bloody Valentine’. He shared that one of the biggest challenges was the speed evident in many of the scenes , which often required short burst shooting. Special rigs had to be created to stabilize the cameras while filming the high speed car chases, and the cars underwent many paint jobs until the right blend was found to produce the desired 3D affect. It was much more difficult to control the multitude of moving elements while shooting in 3D, as opposed to applying 3D effects in post production.
Mania observed that William Fichtner often plays characters with ‘tortured souls’, and invited him to expound. He explained that he’s drawn to interesting characters, and usually begins the process of immersion by delving into the inner motivations of what propels them through the story; what serves as their emotional compass. He doesn’t feel that he’s ever played a ‘pure villain’, but rather finds the dichotomy of their inner battle and builds on that. When we asked what’s up next for him, he laughed and said that thankfully, nothing immediate was lined up. He desperately wants to clean out his garage at home, and prepare to work on his classic car.
The story focuses in Milton (Cage), a hardened felon whose death sent him straight to hell. He finds a way to break out upon the murder of his daughter, to stop an unholy cult from sacrificing her infant in a ritual to take place in three days. During his quest, he befriends Piper (Heard), who joins him in hunting the cult’s leader (Billy Burke). They are relentlessly pursued by the Devil’s agent known only as the Accountant (Fichtner). Milton’s one chance at redemption is wrought with insurmountable obstacles, forcing him to leverage his rage and cunning to save the child before it’s too late. Drive Angry 3D crashes into theaters next February, and if the trailer is any indication, it’s sure to impress even the most seasoned action junkies and 3D aficionados’ alike.