Daniel Radcliffe Talks ‘Escape From Pretoria’ and What He Kept From the ‘Harry Potter’ Set


Daniel Radcliffe is among the most recognizable actors on the planet. Starring within the Harry Potter series for over a decade will do this for an individual. However since ending off the diversifications of the worldwide blockbusters, Radcliffe has carved out a singular path for his profession, taking up a variety of versatile roles on Broadway (Lifespan of a Truth), in indie movies (Swiss Military Man), motion motion pictures (Weapons Akimbo), and even a cameo within the comedy Trainwreck, taking part in the titular “Dog Walker” in a movie-within-a-movie joke for the movie.

His newest a kind of versatile roles is within the movie Escape From Pretoria, an adaptation of the real-life story of political prisoner Tim Jenkin, who helped lead an escape out of Pretoria Central Jail in South Africa in 1979. Primarily based on Jenkin’s autobiography, the thrilling true-life thriller follows Jenkin (Radcliffe) and fellow prisoners Stephen Lee (Daniel Webber) and Denis Goldberg (Ian Hart) as they plan the escape, utilizing their very own creativity to trick guards and create wood keys to open their metal cell doorways.

“The extra you study in regards to the story, the crazier it’s that it even really occurred,” Radcliffe tells Males’s Journal. “These guys risked their lives for what they thought was proper and it provides me hope that guys like Tim, Steven, and Denis and all the opposite characters that have been based mostly on actual individuals even existed. As a result of it isn’t like sooner or later you simply get up and understand you’re going to combat again as they did. It provides me hope that individuals can do this.”

Radcliffe spoke with Males’s Journal about how he researched his function in Escape From Pretoria, how he educated for the half, and what he stored from the Harry Potter sequence.

Escape From Pretoria is now available On Demand and on Digital.

Males’s Journal: With it being based mostly on a real story, what forms of analysis did you do for this function to arrange? 

Radcliffe: I dug into as a lot of the real-life story I might. The primary place to begin was Tim’s guide [Inside Out: Escape from Pretoria Jail] and there are fairly just a few interviews with Tim on-line, so I watched numerous these as properly. I knew a good quantity about South Africa and the historical past of all of it, I’ve spent a while there and grew up figuring out about apartheid, the fundamentals of all of it. But it surely was fascinating simply to learn Tim’s guide and type of discover out what the day-to-day existence of someone who was making an attempt to withstand that and the way somebody went about doing that in that time frame. That was very attention-grabbing for me.

What was the largest problem for you throughout the shoot?

By way of being on set, my largest problem bodily was doing the scene the place the fellows used a brush deal with and handle to unlock their cell from the within. So for the scene, you get the broom deal with and it’s important to unlock the cell lock that’s on the skin of the door when you’re contained in the cell utilizing a mirror to see it. It’s simply extremely troublesome and for me, it was simply this one factor the place I used to be like: ‘I’ve to have the ability to really do this. We’ve got to have a minimum of one shot the place I really did it.’ I did handle to get it will definitely. I feel I used to be the one actor that did it [laughs].

Daniel Radcliffe in Escape from Pretoria / Signature Entertainment
Daniel Radcliffe as Tim Jenkin within the movie ‘Escape from Pretoria’. Daniel Radcliffe in Escape from Pretoria / Signature Leisure

What was the bodily preparation like for you for the movie?

I am going to the health club a great quantity to attempt to keep in form and it’s humorous as a result of I’m not someone that lots of people count on that goes to the health club. So anytime anybody sees me there, they’re like ‘Is that this for an element?’ And I kindly reply, ‘No, I do it on a regular basis,’ with fun. So for this function, there wasn’t an enormous quantity of bodily preparation, however for this film it was extra making ready for the bodily area you’re in. The stresses for this shoot have been extra mundane and time-based. We’ve got an enormous quantity of story to inform and never numerous time to do it, and the assemble of the story may be very detailed with the escape. So bodily, it was extra about coming in day-after-day and figuring out it’s important to be completely on level together with your traces and your actions and being able to go very, very quick. Francis [Annan], the director, was phenomenal beneath that stress.

What was it like working with this director and solid?

Working with Ian Hart, Dan Weber and Mark Winter, they’re simply unbelievable actors and nice teammates to work with. I feel all people understood the speed we have been going to be going. It’s all the time a wierd factor if you are available and know you could have a 24-day shoot and 6 days to rehearse earlier than that, after which it’s important to develop a lifelong friendship with somebody in that point. It’s solely arduous if in case you have somebody who’s proof against that, and on this movie, there was nothing like that. Everybody was on the identical web page and able to work arduous and it made it very easy and enjoyable. Ian and Dan and Mark Winter’s performances have been unbelievable and I used to be very fortunate to be working with them and this director as properly.

You additionally started working once more with Ian Hart, who you starred with within the first Harry Potter movie. What’s it like connecting once more in any case these years?

It was actually cool. I’m beginning to have these experiences an increasing number of, which is each thrilling and terrifying as a result of it means it’s a yardstick which means I’m getting older. But it surely’s additionally pretty as a result of I’ve labored with individuals now that I’ve labored with 20 years in the past on Harry Potter, like Ian who was within the first one with me, and it’s thrilling to attach once more. Within the play that I used to be most not too long ago doing, I labored with an actor Carl Johnson, who I used to be on set with perhaps my first or second day ever on an appearing set again once I did David Copperfield on the BBC earlier than Potter. I used to be perhaps 9 or 10, and now I’m 30 and it’s 21 years later and I’m working with him once more. It’s a very nice factor.

Harry Potter series / Courtesy of Warner Bros.
Actors Daniel Radcliffe and Dame Maggie Smith in ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Half 2. Harry Potter sequence / Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Did you retain something from the Harry Potter set whereas filming the sequence?

Engaged on these seven motion pictures was such a terrific expertise for me, I made lifelong mates. I really have gotten two units of the glasses, these iconic Harry Potter specs. I’ve bought a set from the primary movie and a set from the final movie, as a result of they’re type of a visible of how a lot I grew [laughs]. I’ve bought them, however they aren’t in my home, they’re in a locked field someplace.

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