Guy Pearce bulks up for sci-fi thriller 'Lockout'
Guy Pearce was an amateur bodybuilder in his younger days, so he's no stranger to a strenuous workout regimen.
The former Mr. Junior Victoria drew on that past to get into shape for the part of Snow, the wisecracking tough-guy protagonist of the Luc Besson-produced sci-fi actioner, "Lockout," which hits theaters Friday.
We spoke with Pearce ("Memento") about the flick, in which his character is tasked with breaking the president's daughter (Maggie Grace) out of an orbiting maximum security prison after the inmates take over.
Did you have a tough time getting in shape for this? I've had a little bit of a weight training past, so I really knew what routines to get back into in the short time that I had. So thankfully it didn't feel like foreign territory. But it was a fairly consistent regime that I had to stick to, and I had about a month [to do it].
Do you agree that the Bruce Willis-type that you're playing here is a departure for you? I try to vary what I do all the time anyway, but I'm aware that this is more a piece of entertainment than other films I've done, and falls more into a genre category. I'm not sure whether it's sci-fi or action but I do see it's different [from] what I've done before.
Is the Snow-Willis comparison fair? I can see the similarities with characters Bruce Willis played in "Die Hard," but I wouldn't necessarily want to make a habit out of this. In the same way that I wouldn't want to carry on playing kings of England after "The King's Speech."
The notion of an orbiting prison is so cool it could easily provide the foundation of a very different film, couldn't it? That idea was one of the things that first appealed to me. It would be interesting to do a straight sci-fi movie about that idea and see where it took you. Obviously, once we get out [to the prison] it really becomes a rescue story. In a way, it's a shame that it isn't explored further.
What's appealing about "Lockout's" blend of that sci-fi concept and action movie conventions? I hope, in a way, that the straddling of the sci-fi world and the action world doesn't mean that both also become undermined in this film. I like the idea of the film being entertaining, but also having some sort of integrity.