Jordan Vogt-Roberts is the director of Kong: Skull Island, the latest blockbuster to hit our screens. This Q&A discusses working with the cast, including Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L Jackson and John Goodman.
Kong: Skull Island opens Thursday March 9th
What was it like working with this cast?
It’s a great thing to have a cast like this. I was very, very honored and fortunate. When I make a movie, I like to build a family of actors and crew. Going off to make a movie can be a huge undertaking, so it’s important to find people that become your brothers and sisters-in-arms and your compatriots.
What made Tom Hiddleston right for the role of Conrad?
Have you seen how handsome he is? [Laughs] Tom is amazing because he is one of the most committed actors I have ever known or worked with. He genuinely wants things to be great. He cares so much, not just about that movie, but about the medium and the art as a whole. He has that burning flame in him that forces him to do this. It’s rare to find people like that.
Can you talk a little bit about creating the look of the film?
The first thing I wanted to do was have Kong be a classic movie monster and to walk upright, with the nobility of a god. I also wanted to give him a quality of sadness.
In some ways, our Kong is a throwback to the classic 1933 film King Kong, with an exaggerated brow, big eyes and other exaggerated features. I wanted him to be iconic, fearsome and godlike.
What was it like to capture those big scenes involving helicopters?
We had three flying helicopters. It was important for the actors to have that particular experience in those helicopters. I like to do as many things that are as immersive as possible, because that goes back to what I said about building a family. I want them all to have a camaraderie, where we’re all in the trenches together.
Some of the actors had to sit out on the side of the helicopter, strapped in with only one belt. It was important for them to understand the reality of what they were getting into. Plus it’s one of the few perks on the job where you can say, “I flew a helicopter today!” [Laughs]