Does Willem Dafoe Know Lines From His Most Famous Movies?
The video “Does Willem Dafoe Know Lines From His Most Famous Movies?” showcases the actor playing a game where he attempts to identify lines from some of his most famous films. Dafoe confidently recognizes and recalls lines from movies like “Speed 2,” “Spider-Man,” “Boondock Saints,” “The Lighthouse,” “Platoon,” “Shadow of the Vampire,” “Life Aquatic,” and “At Eternity’s Gate.” He shares personal anecdotes and insights about each film, including his experiences on set, his character preparation, and his interactions with the directors and co-stars. Dafoe also talks about the impact these roles and films have had on audience members and his own career. The video provides an interesting look at the actor’s connection to his iconic roles and the depth of his understanding and appreciation for the characters and stories he has portrayed. It showcases his talent and versatility as an actor and offers fans a unique behind-the-scenes glimpse into the making of these beloved films.
Watch the video by Variety
– Oh God, oh man. Ah, this is easy too. I could do this all day. “So you met my nurses. They clean the copper out of my blood.” I know what this is. This is “Speed 2.” (bell dinging) So you met my nurses. They clean the copper out of my blood. “Speed 2,” a lot of people gimme a hard time about that.
They tease me about the size of my performance that it was over the top. But I swear to God I stand by that performance, because there was no other way to do it. I’ve got a pretty flexible face, an expressive face, and I don’t censor it. I let it do its thing.
I don’t put on faces, but I know for a fact that my face can do some really extreme things. And so when you freeze it into a meme, yeah, you can get a lot of laughs out of that, that’s for sure. Sometimes you do things and people just aren’t ready for them,
Or it’s the wrong time or the context is wrong. Maybe I misread it, but for my money, I stand by that movie. “To say what you won’t, to do what you can’t, to remove those in your way.” That sounds like a “Spider-Man” thing. To say what you won’t, to do what you can’t, to remove those in your way. We did it in one take, so you always had to switch between the two voices and also the camera was moving, so you had to dance with the camera. To prepare for it Sam Raimi gave me
“Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde”, said check this out. It may inspire you. But then 20 years later to revisit it was really cool. – Norman? – Norman’s on sabbatical, honey. Sometimes you run into people and say, oh, I saw the original “Spider-Man”
When I was a kid and now I took my son to it. So it’s kind of a sweet thing that bridges two generations of moviegoers. Oh, oh, oh. I think I don’t have this one. “They exited out the front door. They had no idea what they were in for.” I have no idea.
Oh God. (buzzer sounding) Oh man. I should’ve known this. This is from “Boondock Saints.” They exited out the front door. They had no idea what they were in for. It’s an interesting movie because that’s a movie that basically got a little to no release and then became very popular
Kind of on its own steam, kind of became a cult hit. And I know that only because I’d be any place in the world and people would, a guy, it was normally a man, a young man a certain age would come up and say, hey, you know what I really like?
And I could tell what he was talking about. I don’t know whose idea it was to dance around explaining the shootout. I don’t wanna take credit for it, but I don’t think it’s something we discussed. I think it’s one of those things that happens, which is the way most good things happen. They don’t happen as an idea.
They happen because it feels like the logical thing to do. Ah, this is easy. “Yer fond of me lobster. Say it.” “Yer fond of me lobster. Say it.” That is definitely “The Lighthouse”. This is practically a meme, I think. Yer fond of me lobster. Say it. The accent I used was basically in my imagination. Robert Eggers is a freak for research, but he also is smart enough to know that you can’t film research. So we tried lots of different things and very specific things, studied lots of different accents,
And then basically returned to that basic pirate accent that we know from movies. I did have a dialect coach that helped me with it, of course, and that was important, but at the heart of it, it was something in my imagination and something I heard.
So, although I studied, it was sort of there already. Ah, this is easy too. Sorry. (chuckling) “I love this place at night. The stars, there’s no right or wrong in them. They’re just there.” That’s from “Platoon”. (bell dinging) I love this place at night, the stars.
It’s a moment where my character Sergeant Elias is reflecting on the situation they’re in and he says, we’re gonna lose this war. He’s talking to the Charlie Sheen character Chris Taylor. It’s a kind of a calm before the storm moment. When I heard about the Oscar nomination for “Platoon”, I was at home and the thing that was really special about it is my son’s babysitter called me. He’s the one that told me. Now, to be fair, he’s a real cinephile. I don’t think I even knew what day they were going
To be announced, where the second time I got nominated, I was very aware of it. Oh. “I feed the way old men pee. Sometimes all at once, sometimes drop by drop.” This is “Shadow of the Vampire”. I feed the way old men pee. The research I did for that time period, it’s all there, because it was really a take on something that already existed. So I had a beautiful something to copy. That character is in that movie, “Nosferatu”, and I copied it, or at least I start there
And then leaped off from it. And I had this beautiful extreme makeup that really becomes a mask. And when you have a mask like that, it really allows you to pretend because you don’t look like yourself, you don’t feel like yourself. It’s really key, it’s a trigger for your imagination.
We shot it in Luxembourg, and there were some people on the crew that never saw me out of makeup because I was the first one there and the last one out. So I was always in makeup. “I’ve always thought of you two as my dads.” That is Klaus from “Life Aquatic”. I’ve always thought of you two as my dads. I was working at the Wooster Group, a company that I worked with for many years in New York, and I invited him to a show and he came and watched the show. And then afterwards we went out and had dinner and got along fabulously.
And what’s interesting is he said, I’d love to do something with you, but I probably won’t do another film for like three, four, five years because I’ve just prepared one and I’m gonna go off to Italy to shoot it very soon. So it’s all cast.
And so I’ll see you in three or four years. And I thought, huh, that’s too bad. And then I get a call a couple months later and he said, someone dropped out and there’s a role that I think you’d be great for. And he cast me as Klaus and I came running
And we did that film in Italy. It was a beautiful experience, that’s a beautiful role. He’s kind of a blow hard German guy. And also I met my wife on that movie, so that was special. Ah. “Maybe God made me a painter for people who aren’t born yet.” “At Eternity’s Gate” is the film. The character is Vincent Van Gogh. Maybe God made me a painter for people who aren’t born yet. Doing this movie, the director Julian Schnabel, taught me how to paint, or at least gave me instruction. And I was painting because there’s no stunt painter in the movie. I’m actually painting.
And he really taught me how to see, how to look at things in a different way. So it was a very important experience for me. And not only that, but then that became the key to looking at Van Gogh’s paintings. And I probably didn’t appreciate him, certainly not as much
As I do now having gone through that experience, because I feel like I have a personal relationship now. I gotta say, these are all pretty easy so far. Well see. “If I was a wood cutter, I’d cut. If I was a fire, I’d burn. But I’m a heart and I love.
That’s all I can do.” That’s almost moving just to say it. That’s a fellow called Jesus Christ from Martin Scorsese’s “The Last Temptation of Christ”. Yeah, I get moved just reading that. If I was a wood cutter, I’d cut. If I was a fire, I’d burn. But I’m a heart and I love. That’s all I can do. I did read the Bible because, of course, we’re telling a certain kind of story,
But also if you look at the New Testament, you basically have a bunch of different guys telling the same story, but they all have variations on it. So it’s nice to entertain those different points of view, and to play Jesus is almost impossible.
But the whole point of the movie is this guy is struggling with the idea of being Jesus, of this task that he’s been handed. Like all great directors, he gives you a good setup. You often hear these stories, particularly about his collaborations with Robert De Niro and probably with Leonardo DiCaprio now,
That there’s lengthy discussions and you kind of feel like they talk a lot about the psychology before they. There were none of that. First of all, “Last Temptation” was a low budget movie, and we were really kind of shooting on the fly. One day you’d be healing the blind
And then you’d be on the cross the next day. I mean, there was no waiting, there was no discussion. We really had to get to it. Ah. “From this moment on, you will now be known as Sharkbait.” That is Gil from “Finding Nemo”. From this moment on, you will now be known as Sharkbait. Gil is a, the type of fish is called a Moorish Idol. He’s kind of a rough guy, not unlike Klaus in “Life Aquatic”. He’s a little bit of a blowhard, and I think he also fictionalizes some of his past.
So he really stands as a tough guy and a leader. But I think deep down he’s a softie. So I like those kind of contradictions in the character. It’s a beautiful Pixar film directed by Andrew Stanton, and it was really fun to do. To work with him on the voice,
You just go back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, and he just turns you on by suggesting things. So you do every imaginable interpretation of the lines, and they just collect lots of material and then put it together. If I remember right, I think most of it was done wild.
That is, without looping to picture. And then they animate after. “Speak in Italian. Help me. Please don’t answer in English.” This is what I say to my wife all the time. It’s hard when you’re trying to learn Italian and your wife speaks many languages and if you’re speaking Italian with her, she gets a five-year-old version of yourself. So it kind of puts a stress on the relationship. But at the same time, I need her speaking Italian so I can learn. Geez Louise.
This isn’t from “English Patient”, is it? Oh, this is “Tomaso”. (bell dinging) Lemme speak to you in Italian. Help me. Please don’t answer in English, huh? That’s close to home because “Tomaso” was, although it wasn’t my autobiography, it’s a totally improvised movie. But it had a lot of elements that the director,
Abel Ferrara and I, who worked together very closely, were familiar with. It’s kind of funny that I make a joke about my wife, when in this, it’s actually that. That it’s about a man, an American director who’s living in Rome and he gets upset with his wife
Because of the very thing that I said I struggle with with my wife. Fortunately, I speak a little better now. “My father once told me”. No, I should say, “My father once told me, always carve with compassion. He was a fucking idiot, but it’s not bad advice.” That wasn’t exactly right.
I thought I’d try, I shouldn’t show off. But this is from the beautiful movie, “Poor Things”. (bell dinging) My father once told me, always carve with compassion. He was a fucking idiot. I was a Yorgos Lanthimos fan and I was a fan of Emma.
And they called me one day and they just pitched to me. And I liked it so much. And the way they described the character, I liked the fact that he was a surgeon. I come from a medical family. And the fact that his face was disfigured, there were many things that I thought,
Ooh, this will be fun to play with. This is fun, I could do this all day. “Aren’t you aware that you put Nic’s shoes on wrong in this picture?” Is that “Antichrist”? (bell dinging) You aware that you put Nic’s shoes on wrong in this picture? A difficult movie, but beautiful because it expresses very interesting things about grief, about sexuality, about women’s power, about men’s denial of women’s power, about their magical strength, about men’s fear. I think because of the violence in it,
The horror elements, it’s very tough. And also some of the subject matter. I think the prologue and the epilogue of that movie are pure cinema. They’re really beautiful sequences. And I enjoy working with Lars so much because I feel very challenged and engaged. I’ve worked with him four or five times.
He’s one of the greats. He gets accused of being misogynist, but in fact, I think he identifies much more with women than men. And he puts a lot into the questions that his women characters have and sides with them on certain struggles that they have.
And I think that’s the beauty of cinema, that it can make us see things that we don’t normally see. And it can give us a broader understanding of life and make us a little more compassionate, a little more open to experience. The last is the first. “We’re going nowhere. We’re going nowhere fast.” Okay. That’s from a film called “The Loveless”. Which was essentially for all practical purposes, my first significant role. We’re going nowhere. Fast. It was Catherine Bigelow’s first feature. She co-directed and co-wrote it with a man by the name of Monty Montgomery, who then went on afterwards to work with David Lynch as a producer. But anyway, a very low budget movie.
They saw me at the Wooster Group and said I was the guy for the role. They called me up very direct. I didn’t have an agent in those days. They said, do you wanna make this movie? They sent me the script, I said, yeah. And that started my love affair with movies.
It got me started, it made me love performing with a camera. It made me love going with people to a place, creating something and having this adventure. I’m from the theater and that was my identity, but this was a whole new thing for me. So I thought, this is cool.
So that was the beginning of that, I’d say.
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Video “Does Willem Dafoe Know Lines From His Most Famous Movies?” was uploaded on 01/24/2024 to Youtube Channel Variety