One of the many films to premiere at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival was director Juan Carlos Medina’s Victorian London-set mystery The Limehouse Golem. Based on the Peter Ackryod novel Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem and adapted by Jane Goldman, this English crime thriller begins with the arrest of Elizabeth Cree (Olivia Cooke), a famous music hall performer who is suspected of murdering her husband (Sam Reid), who it turns out may have a connection to a series of gruesome killings attributed to a figure known only as The Limehouse Golem. An inspector named Kildaire (Bill Nighy) is brought in to take over the case and is tasked with trying to figure out the mystery before another victim is killed.The Limehouse Golem also stars Douglas Booth as renowned performer Dan Leno and Daniel Mays, Maria Valverde, and Eddie Marsan. For more on the film, read Adam’s review.
Shortly after seeing the film I sat down with Douglas Booth and Bill Nighy for an exclusive video interview. They talked about making the film, memorable moments from filming (which included trying to shoot during a hurricane), how Juan Carlos Medina’s approach to the material is different than an English director’s would have been, what they collect, why you’ll never see Bill Nighy do karaoke, and a lot more. Check out the interview above and below you’ll see a list of everything we talked about along with the official synopsis for the film.
Douglas Booth and Bill Nighy:
- They talk about the story and who they play. Bill reveals he’s wanted to play a detective for a long time.
- How did the script change during production?
- Memorable moments from filming. They reveal they tried to shoot during a hurricane.
- How the film did a great job with the production design and how they built a lot of their own sets.
- How Juan Carlos Medina had a different take on the material than what might have been done if an English director had helmed the film.
- How do they typically like to work on set. Nighy likes chocolate bars and music.
- How many takes they like to do and if they like to shoot the rehearsal.
- What do they collect?
- What’s their go-to karaoke song?
Here’s the official synopsis for The Limehouse Golem:
Set on the unforgiving, squalid streets of Victorian London in 1880, our tale begins in the baroque, grandiose music hall where the capital’s most renowned performer Dan Leno (Douglas Booth) takes to the stage. The whimsical thespian performs a monologue, informing his dedicated audience of the ghastly fate of a young woman who had once adorned this very stage, his dear friend Elizabeth Cree (Olivia Cooke); for the beguiling songstress is facing up to her forthcoming death by hanging, having been accused of murdering her husband John Cree (Sam Reid). Lizzie’s death seems inevitable, until Detective Inspector John Kildare (Bill Nighy) is assigned to the case of the Limehouse Golem – a nefarious, calculating serial killer, murdering innocent, unconnected victims, leaving behind barely identifiable corpses – and his distinctive, trademark ‘M’. All is not what it seems and everyone is a suspect and everyone has a secret.