Prisoners - The Stars Find Their Characters
The gripping revenge drama Prisoners takes two middle aged couples through the harrowing kidnapping of their children and the search for them. Stars Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, Terrence Howard and Maria Bello told Mrs. Robinson how they defined their characters.
Maria Bello, as a mother of the kidnapped girl“I didn’t feel it was right for her ever to change her clothes. It’s a week. My hair gets greasier as I get more tired. My character breaks down as a mother of a 12 year old and a 7 year old, when the child got abducted, the only choice was falling down on my knees in grief. I have so much compassion for those mothers. All the things that happen to us in our life are scattered all over our table and a real artist can take that garbage and sculpt it into something beautiful thing and present it to the world. My gift is to give you something new.”
Hugh Jackman, father of kidnapped girl and avenger:“I researched sleep deprivation. The movie takes place in eight or nine days. I talked to a father whose kid was gone. The madness that the child is waiting for you. They’re not waiting not for the police but for you and the police tell us to leave it to them. You can’t abandon your child and that’s what sleeping would be.”
Jake Gyllenhaal, haunted detective on the case:“I did a lot of “preparation” for this movie. I always watched police videos, interrogation videos and sometimes really horrific videos. And on the way to work, I’d meditate on certain things in the scenes. I’d resist how dark it was, that world it threw me into. I could feel that push and pull inside me and it would sometimes panic me. You watch these things and you don’t even know how to respond, it’s so visceral. It really broke me.”
Terrence Howard, Jackman’s accomplice and father of kidnapped girl:“My job was to keep my bra on right. I was the woman in the relationship. I guess if there is any kind of tic it’s that nonstop heartbeat, that mean streak of morality that was constantly running up his spine and that prevented him taking the necessary steps in retrieving his child. I grew up in a household where I had my mother, grandmother, great grandmother and great great grandmother and we called her Mother and love was a huge theme throughout the house. Mother would tell me “Just be still Terry, God will work anything out “. For the character I had to refer back to the ages of cradling me through terrible situations and reminding me to be still and I was trying to transfer that into Hugh’s mind, “Just be still”.