German website filmstarts.de sat down with Mary on the set of’ Gemini Man earlier this year where they talked about the movie. I have copy/pasted and translated the entire interview for all of you to checkout with the rest of it under the cut.
FILMSTARTS: What made you particularly excited about “Gemini Man”?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: Oh, there are many things. It’s just a fantastic, rare opportunity to make a big, fun and entertaining action movie that has a heart and says something. The film asks questions about life, aging and aging, it is about existential crises. Of course I still have the chance to work with Ang Lee. I was so excited to meet him and to audition.And now I’m allowed to work with him. The combination of Ang and Will Smith, the role and the dimension of the film are terribly exciting for me.
FILMSTARTS: Can you tell us something about the scene you are currently shooting and watching?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead:Naturally. You are really lucky. We are now shooting the first proper week of action and weapons, which is the climax of the movie. It’s going to be dangerous to Will’s character Henry. We are going to flee, but we do not know who we are. This is true for most of the film, but it is becoming clearer and clearer that we are running away from our own organization for which we are actually working. This raises a lot of questions that the characters pose about themselves. Henry is already beyond this point. He is a bit dulled and disillusioned with life and his work, while my character clings to the old ideals of what it means to work for the government and the country. And also to have the pride. She wants to find out what the government really does and why she is chasing this innocent man. That makes them question everything. We’re just trying to survive while the hunters are trying hard to kill us.
FILMSTARTS: The genre cinema is found in your filmography again and again. What motivates you to shoot these films?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: I just like this physical game, that’s exciting for me. I like characters who know what to do to survive in a dangerous situation. I’ve done horror and sci-fi movies so far and just a few action movies like ” Die Hard 4.0 ” or something.But not so many. This action-drama terrain here is new to me. It’s really refreshing to play someone who knows how to survive and is not just some love interest. That’s why I enjoy finding genre pieces like this, where there are not as many genre stereotypes as you’d expect. I find that very satisfying.
FILMSTARTS: Do you have a favorite movie by Ang Lee?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: Oh, that’s so difficult because he really leaves his footprint everywhere. This is so great because he has done so many genres. I think ” Brokeback Mountain ” is probably my favorite Ang Lee, but I really like everything he did. ” The Ice Storm “, ” Tiger & Dragon” , it stands for authenticity and truth, because the genre does not matter. I admire that.
FILMSTARTS: Can you give us an insight into the casting process? How did that go?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: At first I recorded a tape. That’s usually how it works now, when I speak for something. I get the script and am asked to tape some scenes, which I did in this case. Actually, I do not think much about it. After that, I did not hear anything for a while – until I heard Ang Lee liked the rehearsal and I was considered. One day, on a Saturday, I got a telephone call that Ang Lee wanted to see me the next day in Savannah. I was just about to do something in Winnipeg, Canada. the editorial: ” The Parts You Lose “].
That’s why it got hectic, because we had to find out quickly how we could meet. In Savannah or Winnipeg? In the end, we met in New York to make it easier for me. At the meeting we spent a few hours together, playing through some scenes. He was wonderful, so friendly and nice. He registers every last detail.The next day I had the role. You do not hear for months and then everything happens very fast. That was great.
FILMSTARTS: What about Will Smith? Is he really as weird as we all think?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: Yes, he is! He is the best. He is an absolute professional and full of energy, open to all and makes the team laugh constantly.It really looks like he loves what he does. He’s the best guy you want to be with because his good mood is contagious.
FILMSTARTS: Is it interesting for you to see Will Smith playing two characters at the same time?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: Yes, that’s it. So far, we had far fewer scenes together, in which Will Junior [the younger] was, we’ll come to that later. But it’s amazing to see how he switches between the roles. He then becomes a completely different person, he has found a way for himself. I am really curious how this technology will look later on the screen. I know his face so well over the years that it’s a special experience to see 23-year-old Will Smith back on screen.I can not wait.
FILMSTARTS: Are you aware that you are technologically involved in writing film history?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: I try not to think too much from this perspective. I’m so focused on doing my job well and doing everything Ang requires. There’s a lot I have to think about. That’s why I strive to keep the technology idea out.