In our last interview with the EE Rising Star nominees, the star of Get Out talks horror and bingo
Where you know him from: As Chris, a black man who becomes embroiled in a living nightmare when he goes to visit his white girlfriend’s family in upstate New York, in Jordan Peele’s societal thriller Get Out.
Moment he knew the film was huge: “I still haven’t processed it. I think [the fact that we’re still] talking about the film in 2018, when it came out nearly a year ago, is significant. We’re still having important conversations about it. That’s huge.”
Putting the film’s success into context: “Someone told me it was the next generation’s Blair Witch. I remember that film so vividly growing up, so to hear that meant a lot to me.”
On Get Out’s ‘the sunken place’ transcending into real life: “People keep using it to describe the current state of the world. It’s weird! But a massive compliment to Jordan. He coined a phrase that is so malleable. I think it has a different meaning for different people, that’s allowed it to kind of mutate and take on new meanings. That sense of falling into something you can’t control… trying to navigate that… it’s a testament, for sure.”
His favourite scene to work on: “Probably the silent bingo scene. That scene is so important, it’s when everything begins to turn. The first time I watched the finished thing was at the premiere – I was so anxious, watching in front of all these people. I remember sinking back into my seat, almost relieved, thinking, ‘Ohh, this film is so amazing.’ The way that revelation is teased out, I loved it. It’s so carefully done.”
His relationship to the horror genre: “I’ve been brought up on them. I had a babysitter that used to show me Freddy Krueger. Talk about a formative experience.”
On horror as catharsis: “It triggers something different in everyone. For me, Jordan said it would be a cathartic experience, so it was. I cannot overstate that man’s vision.”
The scene he auditioned with: “The hypnotism scene. In the final cut, you’ve got the sound and the shots meshing together – teaspoon stirring, metal on china. But when you’re auditioning, it’s just you. This is a film where you just have to commit and believe in it. I knew it might look silly, but I knew I had to go for it. So I did. I became frozen, paralysed, and I felt the fear Chris feels.”
His acting masterclass: “I give it my all, then I go home. That’s how I live my life.”
On being nominated for the EE Rising Star Award: “It’s an award that means a lot. So many people I admire have been nominated, and it’s a chance to get excited about new, talented people. The present nominees are people I know and love, it’s wicked.”
See him next: In Marvel’s Black Panther. “You want a tease? People aren’t ready, I’m telling you. We’re going into new territory and everyone should be excited.”
Get tickets to Get Out
Want to see Daniel Kaluuya in action before you vote for the EE Rising Star Award? ShortList is hosting an exclusive screening of Get Out at Bafta, Piccadilly, London from 6pm on Saturday 10 February. Tickets are free but limited, so head to seeitfirst.com and enter the code HRYNK5 to secure your tickets now.
Have your say at the 2018 British academy film awards by voting for the EE Rising Star Award
The EE Rising Star Award is the only accolade at the EE Baftas voted for by you. Now in its 13th year, the award is dedicated to recognising emerging acting talent that has captured the public’s imagination over the past year. This year’s nominees are Timothée Chalamet (Call Me By Your Name), Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), Josh O’Connor (God’s Own Country), Florence Pugh (Lady Macbeth) and Tessa Thompson (Thor: Ragnarok) who will need your vote to become the 2018 EE Rising Star.
To have your say, visit ee.co.uk/BAFTA and cast your vote before 14 February. The winner will be announced at the EE British Academy Film Awards on 18 February.