Tye Sheridan has been working like a madman since he was 15 years old. After getting his breakout role in Terrence Malick‘s Tree of Life, Sheridan co-starred opposite Matthew McConaughey in his second film and Nicolas Cage in his third. Since then, the young actor has made an unusual amount of smart career moves, consistently tackling new genres, bouncing between budget sets, and working with one influential filmmaker after the next. Heading into 2017, Sheridan has a key role in a major superhero franchise and a full slate of films in post-production, including Steven Spielberg‘s highly-anticipated adaptation of Ernest Cline‘s Ready Player One.
His latest is Detour, a psychological thriller from Black Death and Triangle director Christopher Smith. Sheridan stars alongside Bel Powley and Emory Cohen as a seemingly innocent young man who believes his stepfather intentionally put his mother in a coma who gets in over his head with the wrong people after he tries to drink his grief away.
Earlier this week, I sat down with Sheridan to chat about Detour. Bright and forthcoming, it’s clear that his clever career choices are no accident and that his unusual teenage experiences sparked a significant love for filmmaking. During our chat, we talked about his experience filming an intimate movie like Detour in South Africa, keeping a level head through instant success, his aspirations to get behind the camera, and more. We also chatted about what you learn on the set of a Spielberg film, doing Mo-Cap for the first time in Ready Player One, and more. Check it out below.
So I just spoke with Christopher, and he is quite the character. What kind of set does he run? What does having a director with so much energy and personality bring to it?
TYE SHERIDAN: Oh, it’s great. Energy through the roof. Never too much. He keeps everybody going for sure. Sometimes that’s what you need because you’re shooting 12 hour long days and in the last two hours everyone’s just tired and falling asleep. Someone like this guy, he just never stops and he never stops thinking about the film and that’s wat you want from the captain of the ship.
He kind of landed all of you guys right before you all blew up in your individual ways. Emory before his Brooklyn breakout. Bel before the incredible Diary of a Teenage Girl came out.
SHERIDAN: Well, no I had seen that prior to it. I wasn’t supposed to see it. I snaked a link from a buddy of mine that worked on the film and I saw it because I was like, “Alright, I want to see what this girl’s about.” I hadn’t seen her in anything and I saw her in that and she just blew my mind. When I met her — you know, Bel’s a queen. We all just knew. It was funny because we all just kept joking about how Bel was going to be the greatest part of the movie. Me, Emory and Chris. These three guys, we’re like, “Oh my god, Bel, Bel, Bel…”
How was it taking off with a small cast like this to South Africa for a while?