As part of the Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales press junket we interviewed Brenton Thwaites.
Australian Brenton Thwaites, who had impressed the ﬁlmmakers in such ﬁlms as “The Giver” and “Son of a Gun,” was awarded the role of Henry, the young Royal Navy sailor who is on a vigorous quest to help save a father he has barely known from a terrible fate.
Sitting with Brenton you can tell that he’s new to all of this fame. He was very modest, a little shy and of course very good looking. He gave short answers to the questions but he seemed to really love becoming part of this fun franchise known as Pirates of the Caribbean. One of the questions we were dying to know the answer to was what he thought it was like working with Johnny Depp. And he said it was very scary. ‘’
It was terrifying
We asked him if he could elaborate a little bit on that because it’s really hard to imagine what Jonny Depp is really like in person. I mean I can imagine the intimidation factor because of how famous he is.
It’s always terrifying because you never know what he’s gonna say or do. It always results in humiliation for me. You are always, entering a scene, you know, thinking this guy now is five movies worth of Jack Sparrow. And he’s on the ball and you know, kind of irreverent and impulsive, you know. He kind of- you just anticipate what he’s gonna do and say, so that’s great because, you know, as an actor, it kind of improves your acting in the sense that you’re always open and free and relaxed to go with the flow, but also pretty terrifying.
We also wanted to know how he got the role and what it was like fitting himself into the storyline. He is the son of Elizabeth Swan and Will Turner. He began by telling us that he had to audition and re-audition quite a few times. The movie was put on hold and then he had to audition again and finally landed the role. As far as becoming part of the story. He said it helped him actually…..
I feel as though as it was kind of easier than not having them because they provided such a backstory for my character. You know, we, we start the movie, Dead Men Tell No Tales with the boy version in my character, basically saying, you know, I believe there’s a treasure that can break your curse, and I can spend more time with you. And he says, okay, well if there is, go find Jack Sparrow. He can help you find it. And so I feel like the goal and obligation for my character has already been set, and that, that kind of gives Henry a, a lot more drive and focus for the whole movie.
A lot of times when you work on movies the directors let you either ad-lib or value an actors input. We asked Brenton if he felt valued and if his opinion mattered during the movie making process and he said yes. The “old-school-dudes” did value his opinion.
You know, I think they did value my input as an actor- as an newcomer. There were so many different characters coming into this one to make it a fresh new thing, you know, and I think all the old-school dudes really wanted, you know, make it fresh and exciting and, you know, it’s something they hadn’t done before. So Javier coming on board, myself, Kaya, and the two new directors who- that primarily done independent films were kind of, you know, supported and encouraged on this one.
Since I often take the pictures during these interviews, I hardly ever ask a question. I’m so nervous that maybe I missed an answer while taking the pictures and I’d hate to waist anyone’s time with that because these interviews go by so quickly. However, with Brenton, I realized I wanted to know something about the movie. I wanted to know what the locations were like. Pirates of the Caribbean has the most amazing locations. My family and I actually visited one of the locations for one of the older Pirates movies in San Juan. So I asked him what he thought about the many locations he filmed at.
We shot at about five or six different locations; mainly the studios. I was talking about Saint Martins Square twenty minutes west of the studios where all the mud was. We shot there for a good month and a half, and we shot in Northern New South Wales; they had a beautiful beach- both Hastings Point for our entrance into, our entrance into Saint Martins, I think, you know, the coastal element.
And my favorite location was up on Hamilton Island, shooting out on the Great Barrier Reef. We had some days we shot at a beach called White Haven Beach which is beautiful squeaky beach. You know, when you walk on the sand, it squeaks which is not so good for the sound, but it’s great for effect, and it looks beautiful, and I think we had the most fun right there.
Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales is beautifully made and has an amazing story. You can now see it in theaters.