One year after Anton Yelchin's death, Green Room director Jeremy Saulnier pays tribute via his personal Twitter account. Anton Yelchin died in a freak accident on June 19th, 2016 at the young age of 27 after his car rolled down his steep driveway, crushing him against a security fence. The Russian star's resume included Terminator: Salvation, Star Trek, Green Room, and many, many more that shared his range from the dramatic to comedy and everything in between. Anton Yelchin appeared in Star Trek Beyond last summer and in all kinds of independent movies since 2001's Hearts of Atlantis.
The Green Room director posted a picture of Anton Yelchin from the set of Green Room. Yelchin is wearing a denim jacket and a Minor Threat "Out of Step" t-shirt with black makeup positioned on his face. The simple short heartfelt caption under the photo reads: "Been a year since we lost this cinewarrior. Miss him dearly." Green Room marked the first time that Anton Yelchin and Jeremy Saulnier had worked together, but it's obvious from the success of the movie and the duo's chemistry that they would have worked together on further projects if Yelchin had not tragically passed away.
Jeremy Saulnier spoke to Indiewire right after the news of Yelchin's death had spread. Everybody that new the young actor was in a state of shock, but Saulnier pulled it together to formulate his thoughts on Yelchin. Read what he had to say below.
"Anton was a dream. He was kind and sharp and as sincere as anyone that I've ever known. Our collaboration on Green Room was our first, and until the devastating news of his passing, wouldn't have been our last."
Saulnier went on to talk about Yelchin's seemingly unending commitment to the starring role. He explains.
"I put a lot on his shoulders when I asked him to play my lead, but he carried the cinematic weight like a goddamn champion. Not only did he bring a delicate balance of tragic vulnerability and intense physicality to his character on screen, he offered his unending generosity and patience off screen."
In addition to Anton Yelchin's acting talents and work ethic, Saulnier went on to speak about Yelchin's reminder to the director. He says.
"In an industry governed by Excel sheets and foreign sales estimates, Anton reminded me that there's nothing more valuable than good people. He put me back in the comfort zone I knew growing up, making backyard films with friends, and created a protective bubble where creativity could thrive."
Saulnier's beautiful words on his late friend continue, telling stories of capturing youth on screen all the way up to future roles. Towards the end of his thoughts, Saulnier recalls that he gave Yelchin advice about his directorial debut that he refers to as "lame" after the unfortunate events.
Anton Yelchin was a rare kind of Hollywood actor. Someone who took chances and said yes more often than no, an actor willing to put himself out there and open to anything. In addition to jumping into projects fearlessly, he would do meticulous research and offer his thoughts about making the character better, a true collaborator. While there's no doubt that Saulnier and Yelchin would have worked together again, we're all just lucky to have one movie that they created together.