Two stars of Australia’s latest rom- com could follow their new drinking buddy to Hollywood, writes Neala Johnson
JOHNNY Depp painted the Mad Hatter to find his personality before shooting Alice in Wonderland. Adrien Brody slept in the jungle to get into the right headspace for Predators.
Sarah Snook, Ryan Corr and Ryan Kwanten got really drunk to prepare for Not Suitable for Children.
‘‘ You guys had some weird Astro Boy thing going on!’’ says Snook, giving Corr a whack on the arm.
‘‘ Oh I’d forgotten about that, that was like our secret handshake. We went ‘ Fwooooosssssh’,’’ Corr stiffens into the shape of a rocket lifting off. ‘‘ It was totally Astro Boy!’’ With Kwanten stuck in the US shooting the fifth series of True Blood, the show that made him an international star, it’s left to rising talent Snook and Packed to the Rafters’ goofball Corr to recall their boozy bonding adventures.
‘‘ It was pretty organic, it wasn’t forced bonding,’’ continues Corr.
‘‘ We had a big night in [ Sydney suburb] Newtown a biiiig night in Newtown where a lot of the film is set. I had to pick up my car the next day from Newtown and I think Ryan did, too. It was great because it’s the chemistry and dynamic you can’t act, it just has to be there.’’
Snook and Corr could soon follow in Kwanten’s footsteps, joining the wave of Aussies taking on Hollywood.
Snook, 25, has already come tantalisingly close, testing opposite Daniel Craig for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo before director David Fincher settled on Rooney Mara as his Girl.
‘‘ I was a bit out of it, I didn’t know what was going on,’’ Snook says of shooting screen tests with Fincher calling the shots.
‘‘ There were probably about 30 other people in the room, but he had the camera on his shoulder and was talking to me, so I was not aware that there was anyone else there at all.’’
She returned to the US this year to shoot horror film Jessabelle in North Carolina. She mastered a southern drawl and ‘‘ tried to do as many of my own stunts as possible jumping in the bayou and pretending to drown or being dumped in slime and wrestling a ghost in the bathroom’’.
It was a big culture shock. Someone would try to carry my umbrella and I’m like, ‘ Just let me use my own hand!’
– Sarah Snook
‘‘ The girl who was playing the ghost had a tube to spray slime all over my face,’’ she says. ‘‘ They’re like, ‘ On the count of three, scream!’ And she would go, ‘ Aaargh!’ and slime would go all over my face.’’
Accustomed to Aussie productions where everyone mucks in, Snook found the reverence towards actors on a US movie set ‘‘ incredibly disconcerting’’.
‘‘ It was a big culture shock. Someone would try to carry my umbrella and I’m like, ‘ Just let me use my own hand!’ There are things I like about both [ the Australian and US industries], but definitely I’d like to carry my own umbrella.’’
Corr, 23, is a NIDA graduate and recipient of the Heath Ledger Scholarship.
His profile has boomed since joining TV’s Packed to the Rafters in 2010.
‘‘ Amongst the mums and tradies, I’m doing Top Gun,’’ he jokes. ‘‘ There’s a certain familiarity, most of the time it’s really supportive, but sometimes you get your nuffies and your oddballs.’’
After wrapping the Rafters latest season, he’s now rehearsing with Jacqueline McKenzie for Sydney Theatre Company’s production of Sex with Strangers.
Not Suitable for Children was the first real feature film for Corr and Snook.
They play housemates to Kwanten’s character, Jonah, who is diagnosed with testicular cancer and told he won’t be able to father children. With three weeks until the big chop, he goes on a mission to sow his wild oats.
‘‘ It was definitely a big learning curve,’’ Snook says. ‘‘ I did the ABC telemovie Sisters of War but the romantic lead is a different responsibility than standing at the front going, ‘ I’m heroic! Be brave!’ ’’
For Corr, it was about adjusting to the slower pace of a feature shoot.
‘‘ I was stepping out of television, where you’re shooting 12 scenes a day and whether you like it or not, those are going to be on air. So I’d walk into scenes, stand there and deliver the line. The director was like, ‘ You know you can walk over there or deliver the line over your shoulder.’’
Corr says the function of his character, Gus, was ‘‘ to be completely ignorant. But he does have a lot of witty one- liners and that’s always fun’’.
Meanwhile, Kwanten has laid praise on Snook’s comedic abilities, saying: ‘‘ She has exquisite timing.’’
Snook says it wasn’t a talent she knew she had before Not Suitable for Children.
‘‘ People have told me I’m funny and I go ‘ Pffffffft’. I don’t exactly think I’m quick- witted.’’ NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN, Now showing State Cinema