Liam James and AnnaSophia Robb sat down to chat about their latest film, “The Way, Way Back.”
Okay, the big question, how do you pass somebody inside the water slide tunnel?
Liam: Movie magic. I’m proud to say that Sam and I did our own stunts on this one. We actually had to climb back up the tunnel and switch spots-
Oh, no, you killed the movie magic.
Liam: Sorry, I just.-no, I mean I was kidding (laughs).
And how was your experience working with Sam?
Liam: It was amazing, I saw “The Green Mile” when I was about ten years old and I think one of the reasons I even wanted to become an actor was because of him. His role in that movie is so powerful. When I got to meet him he was super into making sure I was comfortable and really helped me get on the same level and treated me as a peer, not as a kid or anything. He treated me as one of his peers, so I really appreciated that.
So much of this film hinges on your relationship with him and the chemistry between both of you, what did you two do to establish that camaraderie, rhythm and timing?
Liam: I think a lot of that was attributed to Sam. A couple days before we started we sat down, because I had never met him, and we read the script together and we actually did this exercise where you read the lines exactly as they’re not supposed to be read. He’s really into the process, which I loved, script analysis and he really just broke it down. He was just a really great guy to hang out with, anytime in between scenes I was just sitting right next to him and I wanted to learn and I just wanted to hang out with him. We did a little bit of shadow boxing, he taught me a lot about boxing and just little things that make you feel comfortable enough to film a movie.
So, what’s the best thing you learned from him?
Liam: I think Sam is a very generous actor. There were exercises that we did together and it just made the scenes more powerful I think. I think if I was in the future and I was looking at a young actor and I had experience, I would want to help them to gain…because you don’t want to compete, you just want to make everyone the best that they can be.
How accurate and how do you think the script resonates with coming of age and what teens are going through at that age.
Liam: It’s very accurate.
AnnaSophia: That’s why it’s so painful, awkward and funny.
Liam: Yeah and Jim said even some of those experiences about the boyfriend calling him a three were from his childhood.
AnnaSophia: Are you serious? I didn’t know that!
Liam: When he told me that before we started filming, I was like, wow, I really have to do this justice because he had to go through that. I think it’s very current but also has that nostalgic feeling with the old car and when you go off to your summer house, you don’t have to worry about your phone and you can just go to the beach and relax. So I think a lot of people are going to identify with the film.