Director David Mackenzie Talks STARRED UP, Full Cast and Crew Rehearsals, Shooting in Sequence, Filming in a Real Prison, Working with Jack O’Connell and More

     August 27, 2014


At this point, director David Mackenzie has eight feature films to his name, a BAFTA win and he snagged the Prize of the Guild of German Art House Cinemas at the Berlin International Film Festival two times, but he’s still looking to keep things fresh and shake up his process a bit.  His latest film, Starred Up, features Jack O’Connell as Eric, an extremely violent 19-year-old kid who’s prematurely transferred to the same adult prison that his father’s in.

With Starred Up set to begin its limited theatrical run on August 27th in New York City, Mackenzie took the time to talk to us about some of the new methods he used while making it, namely shooting it in sequence and also filming the rehearsals, which didn’t just involve the cast, but the crew, too.  Hit the jump for more on that, Mackenzie’s experience shooting in a former prison, casting O’Connell, having two editors working on the cut while he was in production and more.  You can also click here to read about the Robert the Bruce movie he’s working on.

starred-up-david-mackenzieDavid Mackenzie

  • 00:00 – Making a tough film that still has heart and soul to it.
  • 00:32 – How he got the script and what made him want to take it on.
  • 01:22 – The challenge of making Eric a likable character and bringing out the hope in his situation.
  • 02:07 – How the script grew out of writer Jonathan Asser’s experience working in a prison; how authentic is it?
  • 02:41 – Balancing the facts with the need to make the story cinematic.
  • 03:31 – On the decision to not include an establishing shot of the prison.
  • 04:16 – Shooting the entire movie in a real, formerly operational jail.
  • 05:25 – Making select areas of the prison warmer and more appealing for downtime.
  • 05:45 – On rehearsing with his cast and crew prior to principal photography, and shooting all of it.
  • 07:37 – His preference for shooting rehearsals rather than doing read-throughs.
  • 08:22 – Shooting the film in order and doing company moves within the prison location.
  • 09:25 – On his hopes to shoot in order from now on.
  • 09:40 – On having two editors on set during filming.
  • 10:14 – Working with the two editors instead of just one during post-production.
  • 11:28 – How having access to edited material affected Mackenzie’s work on set, specifically during the scenes with stunts.
  • 12:51 – On casting O’Connell and what made him stand out.

Please enable Javascript to watch this video


David Mackenzie Starred Up Interview

Around The Web

Latest News

Zack Snyder Defends MAN OF STEEL Ending; Teases Batman Connection and Brainiac

Ben Affleck reveals how the Metropolis destruction affected Bruce Wayne.

Friday Box Office: Holdovers Still in Charge as TERMINATOR GENISYS and MAGIC MIKE XXL Stumble into Holiday Frame

Despite solid Wednesday starts, this weekend’s two new releases will not overtake 'Inside Out’ and ‘Jurassic World’ over the July Fourth weekend.

Kevin Spacey & Adrien Brody Talk Directors, Collaboration at Jameson First Shot

The short film competition this weekend announced its three winners: Stephan Tempier, Mark Middlewick & Travis Calvert

Our Favorite “AMERICAN” Movies

With “American” in the title, it can’t be bad.

BLACK PANTHER: Ava DuVernay Passes on Directing the Marvel Film

The 'Selma' filmmaker says she and Marvel had different ideas about what a 'Black Panther' movie should be.

High-Res Presentation Reel Reveals the JOHN CARTER that Could Have Been

This actually looks awesome.

BATMAN V SUPERMAN Scenes Include a Rainy Rooftop Battle and Solemn Chats with Alfred

Get ready for some more crash-bang destruction, now with twice the superheroes!

Skydance CEO & COO David Ellison and Dana Goldberg and Director Alan Taylor Talk TERMINATOR GENISYS

The director and producers talk first cut, deleted scenes, what they learned from friends and family screenings, Easter eggs, and more.

Disney’s 9 Most Wicked Animated Villains

Haleigh, Matt, and Dave single out their picks for best Disney Animated villains, ranging from Snow White's Evil Queen to Hercules' sassy ruler of the Underworld.

New ANT-MAN Trailer Disses the Iron Man Armor

Hank Pym believes that a suit designed to make someone shrink down to the size of an ant isn't “cute technology”.

Page 1 of 4,02712345...102030...Last »
echo ' '; ?>