This weekend’s latest theatrical release sees Patrick Ness’ award-winning novel The Knife of Never Letting Go get the big-screen adaptation treatment with Doug Liman’s Chaos Walking. The movie, starring Star Wars’ Daisy Ridley and Spider-Man’s Tom Holland, is a high-concept science fiction story about a new settlement away from Earth, which is made up of men plagued by a mutation that puts all their thoughts on display. When Ridley’s character crash lands on the planet, she is faced with the perpetual “Noise” of unfiltered thoughts, especially from Holland’s character. But what was Ridley actually looking at when the actors were on set?
When CinemaBlend virtually sat down with Daisy Ridley, she explained what working with Tom Holland, alongside his thoughts, looked like on set. In her words:
It sounds so silly, but it was a bit of a challenge – I always had to remember to keep my eye line differently, because of course there had to be room for The Noise, because we knew it was going to come in visual effects, but I was also contending with Doug [Liman] shouting The Noise. So me and Tom would be doing a scene and Doug would be shouting ‘DOG, DOG,’ or like random stuff throughout the whole scene. So I became weirdly okay – you know during a scene everyone is like be quiet, but not this. So I became very okay with talking to another actor while our director shouted things at us.
On the set of Chaos Walking, it had to have been challenging for Daisy Ridley to keep track of the actor in front of her as well as their thoughts, which would laerr be added visually through CGI and voiceovers. As the actress explained in our interview, she was constantly looking at an eyeline without any performance in front of her while Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman’s shouted about things, such as the thoughts of the movie’s little pup, Manchee.
It’s definitely interesting to understand what's involved in making a movie such as this where one of the movie’s main characters cannot be present on set. The Noise is an unsettling concept of Patrick Ness’ story, and it opens up a dialogue about what our world could look like if we knew all the thoughts going on around us. The Knife of Never Letting Go is part one of three books in the Chaos Walking book trilogy and was an award-winning title when it first hit bookshelves in 2008.
“The Noise” proved to be a complicated idea for Chaos Walking to work with considering the production returned for additional photography two years later and was met with a number of release delays. At one point, it was even rumored to be “unreleasable” by Lionsgate. Now that Chaos Walking is officially out in the world, the movie has garnered mixed to negative reviews by critics but a solid B score from moviegoers on CinemaScore.
Chaos Walking is playing in select theaters now, and you can check out what other new movies are coming out in the month of March here on CinemaBlend.