The actors discuss doing stunts, working through the cold Canada nights and Renny Harlin impersonations
On a visit to the set of Renny Harlin's moody, teen horror film The Covenant, we had a chance to sit down with co-stars Taylor Kitsch, Chace Crawford and Toby Hemingway as they discussed making this highly anticipated film.
Based on the graphic novel by Aron Coleite and Tone Rodriguez, The Covenant is the power passed down from generation to generation, but when four boys accidentally unleash an evil force in the process of receiving the powers from their fathers, they must join together to stop it.
Earlier in the day, we had witnessed these three doing some wirework as they dropped from a cliff and descended down on to a party.
Can you talk a little about your characters in this film?
Chace Crawford: I play Tyler and he's kind of the youngest one. He's a junior in high school and he looks up to Reid. He's kinda the rookie guy that just wants to use the power and be along for the joyride. It's a fun character, just kind of happy go lucky.
Taylor Kitsch: I think Pogue is kind of a mix between everybody within the cast. He's the mediator. Definitely picks his moments to have a laugh, but at the same time can be deadly serious. Hint, hint.... I love Kate (Jessica Lucas), and if you look at her I'll kill you. It goes a bit more than just jealousy with him. He's not just straight up, "This is why I feel this way." There's a lot more going on. You'll definitely see it in the movie. It starts from the very first scene when we all get together.
Toby Hemingway: Reid's not a rebel.
Taylor Kitsch: I don't think he sees the repercussions of his downtrodden past.
Toby Hemingway: Basically, I butt heads with Caleb's (Steven Strait) character a lot. I like to have a good time and I do have an attitude problem. He's a little moody but he also likes to a have fun time. Maybe he takes it too far now and then.
Taylor Kitsch: I think your guy really knows how to push buttons.
Do you turn 18 in the movie?
Toby Hemingway: That's one of the biggest issues in the film. We're really close and the reason why things are starting to happen between the four of us is because we're all about to ascend; now things are getting serious. Everybody's starting to get suspicious of each other.
Taylor Kitsch: People are abusing their powers.
Is there a power struggle between your character and Caleb's character?
Toby Hemingway: No, not really. I think Reid resents him a little. It's a double-edged sword. He resents that Caleb is the leader and that he's always taking charge, but also I think that Reid wants to do his own thing and also does rely on Caleb to sort things out. That's why they butt heads a lot.
How would you describe the film?
Taylor Kitsch: Action thriller. It's like supernatural with the powers but it has really good special effects.
Have you done any flying?
Toby Hemingway: We're doing it in the next couple of days.
How do you guys like doing these stunts?
Chace Crawford: It's a blast.
Taylor Kitsch: I love it. For one, it's a great experience. Two, it helps with the character as well. Knowing that you're going to be doing all that stuff. We did a month previous training on the wires and whatnot, so by the time it comes to shooting, like today and tomorrow, you've got the utmost confidence with everyone and yourself.
Toby Hemingway: Their so specific in what they're doing so you understand the whole time what's going on. You never question what you're doing because...
Chace Crawford: You've got this picture in your head.
Toby Hemingway: Every situation, the lighting and the set you're on, is always so brilliant... like you'd imagine it to be.
Had you guys done stuff like this before?
Taylor Kitsch: Never.
Toby Hemingway: I've bungee jumped. We all have our times in the movie where we show exactly what we're about. I think everyone uses their power in a way their character would. That kind of sums up their character. Everything, from how they jump to how they stand.
Do you all have the same powers?
Taylor Kitsch: Yeah. A unified Warlock power.
Chace Crawford: You could get better than the others but none of us really... you almost know you shouldn't. Then again you are young and it's fun.
What's been the toughest part of the shoot?
Taylor Kitsch: Lighting.
Chace Crawford: The cold at night.
Toby Hemingway: Just when it hits about... the weather.
Chace Crawford: The cold and shooting outside?
Toby Hemingway: Your fine in your tent. Then you'll be doing your shot and it's like "Supper time."
Taylor Kitsch: And it's all night shooting now...
Toby Hemingway: It's a dark movie. So you sleep all day and you wake up and the son will be going down again.
What's it been like working with Renny Harlin?
Chace Crawford: It's been great.
Taylor Kitsch: Yeah.
Toby Hemingway: It really has. Everyone here knows exactly what they want and they explain it to you so well. If you have an idea they'll be like "Show what you've been thinking about." They've been great.
(At this point all three of them launch into Renny Harlin impersonations saying things like "More," "Again" and "Brilliant... one more take.")
How much of the stunts are you guys doing them?
Taylor Kitsch: We're doing all of it.
Chace Crawford: We do everything we can do.
Taylor Kitsch: I would do absolutely everything if it was possible.
What is some stuff you didn't do?
Taylor Kitsch: The motorcycle scene. There's some pretty intense stuff in that. I'm after someone.
Chace Crawford: They didn't want to kill us.
Do you guys have a favorite scene?
Chace Crawford: There's scenes that are individual. There's a group scene where we're all at Nicky's Bar.
Toby Hemingway: My favorite scenes are when we're all together.
Taylor Kitsch: Yeah.
Chace Crawford: Any close-up on me that's my favorite.
Taylor Kitsch: Nicky's Bar is my favorite as well.
The Covenant comes to theaters nationwide on September 8 through Screen Gems.