I recently got the chance to talk to Luis Da Silva Jr about his role in Colin Farrell’s new film, ‘Dead Man Down’. Here, Luis talks about how he got involved in the project and what it was like working with the cast and crew on-set…
What’s the general plotline surrounding the film?
Victor, a New York City enforcer played by Colin Farrell, seeks vengeance against the city’s most powerful crime boss, Alphonse – (played by Terrance Howard), by infiltrating his gang of henchmen. Along the way Victor is blackmailed by his neighbour Beatrice – (played by Noomi Rapace), who wants him to kill the man who caused her facial scars. It’s a modern tail of revenge, redemption and has romantic aspects as well.
Tell us a bit about the character you play in the movie…
I play Terry, Alphonse’s (Howard) second in command and loyal henchman. Initially we are unaware of Victor’s revenge plot against us, but once the plan is unveiled they work together trying to ensure that they are the last men standing.
How did you get involved in the project in the first place?
When I first heard about this role I was immediately intrigued with the plotline and what I could portray with my character. I auditioned for the role of Terry in front of the directors and producers and I got the part.
How would you say this film is different and unique?
Being a part of this film I was able to work with the amazingly talented Niels Arden Oplev, the acclaimed director of the original Swedish hit ‘The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo’. He has such an unbelievable refreshing perspective that makes this different from the traditional action movie. The film has so many plot twists and suspenseful moments that audiences won’t be able to predict where the story will lead.
The film stars Colin Farrell, Noomi Rapace, Terrence Howard, Dominic Cooper, Isabelle Huppert, your good self, Stu Bennett, Franky G, Declan Mulvey, John Cenatiempo, Roy James Wilson and Myles Humphus – with Niels Arden Oplev onboard as director – what was it like working with the cast and crew on-set? Any good anecdotes?
It was intimidating at first because I have been a huge fan of Terrance, Noomi and Colin’s work over the years. It was such an honour to be in a movie working alongside such talented actors. But Niels put me at ease and was confident in my portrayal and contribution to each scene. We all relied on each other to make each scene the best it could be for final takes. The opening scenes with the shoot-out were super intense and a great opportunity to appreciate the work of all the stunt coordinators.
Let’s talk a bit about you Luis. What made you want to get into the acting industry in the first place?
When I was just 18 years old, I was a part of a huge Nike ad campaign which allowed me the opportunity to be featured in several commercials and even travel around the world. When I finally settled back into the states, I found myself interested in transitioning from commercials to movies. My first role was in ‘The Brave One’ with Jodie Foster and ever since then I knew this was the career path I wanted to pursue.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to pursue a career in the industry?
You must be dedicated and determined to improve your craft each and every day. Also, patience is key to having longevity in this industry. Very few actors have success overnight and you just have to keep at and work harder. A lot of no’s will be heard before you are given your opportunity to show your talent, however when you do get that yes it makes it all worth it.
You’ve been in a number of different films and TV projects – which actors/actresses have been your favourites to work with so far and why? Any good stories?
Terrance and I have worked on two projects together, so this most recent role provided me the opportunity to really get to know him and learn about his talents beyond acting. Also, working with Jodie Foster was really indescribable. She is such an amazing actress and the fact that she has stayed so humble and kind is so refreshing in this industry.
What’s currently on your I-Pod right now?
95% of the music I listen to is hip hop. Right now I’m listening to French Montana, Drake, Rick Ross and Lil’ Wayne. I do like some R & B artists and occasionally some pop music.
If you could have dinner with three guests – (living or dead), who would you choose and why?
I am a huge basketball fan so I would enjoy sitting down with Michael Jordan. I would also love to pick the brain of one of my favourite directors Quentin Tarantino. I love all his movies and I think that he has a vision and style that cannot be duplicated by anyone else. I know this sounds like a strange pick, but I would also love to have dinner with Barbara Walters and hear about all the experiences she has had in her long career. She has met and interviewed so many interesting people over her career that I think it would be great to hear all her stories.
Which film was your favourite of 2012 and why?
I really enjoyed ‘Django Unchained’. It was full of amazing performances from some of today’s really talented actors. Also, it was just a really great full realized movie, another Tarantino classic.
What’s coming up for you in 2013?
I have a bunch of projects in the works right now including a small role in the upcoming comedy ‘The Heat’ with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy.
Thanks for the interview!