“Green Room” had a roomful of supporters at the Los Angeles premiere of Jeremy Saulnier’s new punk-rock bloody thriller. The cast and the writer-director spoke with Variety about the tension on set, working with old friends, Saulnier and the legendary Patrick Stewart.
Stewart was attracted to the project because of the world portrayed in the film one of “extreme political beliefs.”
“I play a decent man with a nice little business, who does electrical repairs but who has another life,” he said.
Stewart also said that being on the set was very unique and quite different from other experiences he’s had on set.
“I didn’t socialize with any of the band, at all,” he said. “It was a very intense experience filming this movie and at times quite disturbing because of what happens.”
On working with Saulnier: “He knew exactly what the world was that he wanted to create and he did that, so much so that when we screened it for my wife in London, she left twice and then came back. It’s quite distressing.”
Saulnier treated this movie as a “war movie,” because he wanted to treat the violence as grounded and real instead of sadistic blood-lust.
“I wanted it to be a blunt-force, old-school siege movie” he said. “The whole intent of the film was to create the most intense experience I could muster, information deprivation, making the characters relatable and searching for answers but not getting much.”
Yelchin plays a bassist in the punk-rock band The Ain’t Rights, who face off with a gang of white supremacists at a club in Oregon.
“Jeremy’s film are beautiful and moving,” said Yelchin, “but this one is brutal and moving.”
Yelchin was in a punk rock band when he was younger and said that doing the music scenes were the best part of the film. But also working with his friends, Imogen Poots and Alia Shawkat.
“It’s such an honor to work with Patrick Stewart, with someone who has accomplished so much on stage and screen. It’s more impressive the kind of human being he is.” He added: “When you accomplish so much but remain such a good human being it’s incredibly inspiring.”
Yelchin and Poots had worked together on the remake of “Fright Night” in 2011 and have since become great friends.
“Working with him isn’t just a great experience working actor on actor but it’s very inspiring, he searches every facet of film,” she said.
On working with Patrick Stewart: “Iconic and hilarious.”
“Green Room” opens in limited release on April 15 and wide release on April 29.