Willem Dafoe's 'strange' The Lighthouse shoot

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 29 January 2020
Willem Dafoe

Willem Dafoe

Willem Dafoe admits it was a "strange" experience shooting 'The Lighthouse' alongside Robert Pattinson, because he still "barely knows" the star because they didn't spend much time together outside of the 32-shoot

Willem Dafoe admits filming 'The Lighthouse' alongside Robert Pattinson was a "strange" experience.

The pair spent every day of the 32-day shoot working on the motion picture, which tells the story of two lighthouse keepers who start to lose their sanity when they are stranded after a storm breaks out, but they didn't spend much time together during breaks from filming.

He said: "The crazy thing is we were basically only with each other in the scene. So I knew nothing outside of the world that we were in.

"This wasn't like a rigid rule to do some sort of method thing, to always stay in character.

"It was a practical thing, in that the conditions were so difficult, usually between scenes we'd have to retreat to get dry, to get stay healthy, to practise things.

"It was strange because I've never been in that situation. We do a whole film with one other actor and you barely know the guy outside of the roles that you're playing."

Dafoe admits he is conscious about being typecast as an actor, so he likes to pick films where he can shoot somewhere he has "never been before", and he loves to work in different cultures.

He added to Sky News: "One thing I notice is I like a little adventure when I'm shooting, I also really respond to strong directors. And I like to learn something.

"I like to go someplace where I've never been before. I like working in different cultures. You gotta pay off the life experience to feed the pretending."

Dafoe recently admitted gave up eating lobster during filming for 'The Lighthouse'.

He said: "I knew about massaging a lobster. And how to prepare it.

"But this time, up in Nova Scotia, it bothered me. That lobster was speaking to me. So one day, I just stopped eating lobster, on that shoot. Haven't eaten one since. I cooked up pasta, rice and vegetable dishes."

Dafoe plays Thomas Wake in the movie and stars alongside Pattinson's Ephraim Winslow.

The Lighthouse

  • 5 stars
  • 2019
  • US
  • 1h 51min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Robert Eggers
  • Cast: Robert Pattinson, Willem Dafoe
  • UK release: 31 January 2020

Ephraim (Pattinson) and Tom (Dafoe) are two lighthouse keepers in 19th century Maine who find that the isolation is getting to them. A slow-burn psychological thriller with rich use of salty period language and unexpected shards of black comedy, filmed in shadowy monochrome: the result is somewhere between FW Murnau and…

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