"As a newcomer to the project, I had to take any story I knew with a pinch of salt and adapt to Tarsem's world, and approach it from the point of view that mythology is storytelling. The point of storytelling is to present an ideal and fantasy and a strong character for the oppressed to look up to, to get through hardship and down times in life. It all depends on the teller. And Tarsem is the teller of this tale and he's telling his version of the story." (source)

"Theseus is a peasant. He's ostracized and his mother called a whore because she was raped. No one knows who the dad is. That was the baseline characteristic of Theseus. He loves his mother dearly and protects those he loves ferociously. So he's a good person at heart but has a very dark coloring because of how he's been treated." (source)

"The most enjoyable part of the movie (Immortals) was doing all the big fight scenes. It's kind of like going to war but not getting hurt and you get to win. You know you're going to win, so you get to enjoy all the bits in between. It's being a kid again. Playing with a stick in the garden with your brother, thwacking away at each other. But you're wearing armor by a fantastic costume designer; you've got a shield and it looks amazing." (source)

[on his physique in Immortals] "It's like wearing a permanent costume. When you put on a costume before work, you look in the mirror or even before you look in the mirror, you feel different. And when you're in that kind of shape —and it was really was my costume because I barely had a costume— it certainly does help." (source)

[on Theseus role] "I was an unknown. But I wanted it badly. Tarsem saw the passion. And if you've got nothing else, passion will get you through." (source)

[on Mickey Rourke and their Immortals final fight scene] "It was basically two days of me getting beat up. It was intense, but we got the final result." (source)

[on Immortals final fight scene] "The fight is brutal and messy. These are two exhausted, desperate men who want to tear each other's throats out. There's some jujitsu, some Greco-Roman grappling, but mostly it's two guys kicking the crap out of each other." (source)

"Tarsem had a very exact vision for the job; a lot of passion about it. When it came to meeting him, I was sort of picked up by all his excitement about the project. There was no saying 'no' to that." (source)

[on Immortals' story] "You can draw some parallels to the popular mythology of Theseus. But this certainly is not the traditional story. This is a battle of men versus men. There are gods and then there are Titans, but they do not take a direct hand in (human) affairs." (source)

"Tarsem did this wonderful thing of building many, many (miniature) sets of everything and then creating a visual storyboard. He had everyone come into a room and showed us where we start, this is what it looks like, and talked us through the entire movie for about two hours." (source)

[on Immortals fight choreography] "I was literally learning it minutes before doing it. That was fun and a great challenge, but I'm a bit of a perfectionist, and I get pissed off at myself if I don't get it exactly right." (source)

"When Tarsem and I first met, I did a screen test and he said, 'OK, let's take the shirt off. By the way, you know if you get this part, a six-pack won't be good enough. You're going to need an eight-pack.' I was far from having even a six-pack, then. But I took it as a challenge. 'No more excuses for not getting into shape. I am doing a job that requires me to be in this kind of shape, so … hell-bent-for-leather, let's do it!'" (source)

"There's a similar message in all the stories of Western mythology: The hero rising from nothing to greatness, against all odds. These are idealized characters who triumph over repressive regimes, tyrants. Modern myths work the same way as the ancient ones. The setting changes, the story doesn't." (source)

"(Theseus) was a reluctant hero, one of those guys who ignored the problems of the world around him until the world took his mother from him. If he were to be alive today and see what's happening in Greece, he probably wouldn't give a fig." (source)

"The (Immortals) sets were absolutely fantastic and elaborate and that helps us as actors, if I might speak for myself, helped me as an actor enormously because we had our immediate surroundings and they were so well designed with such a fantastic attention to detail that you could quite easily, if you turned your back to the green screen portion and you just faced, say, the village set, it literally felt like you were there! There were little things burning and it smelled like it was not in a studio. It was all really, really well done. It made an enormous difference to all of our performances, I believe. (source)

[on seeing Immortals movie finished] "It completely blew me away. … it really, really blew me away. It's a stunning, stunning movie." (source)

"The most surprising thing of Tarsem (is) his boundless energy. … Everyone feeds off him. Without him giving that energy to everyone else on set, I don't know if we would have got through the days to be honest." (source)

[on why the ladies are going to love Immortals film] "There's a lot of shirtless men in there. And there is a love story…" (video source)

"Tarsem has such a passion, and a wonderfully creative mind. When he spoke to me about the role, he took me into a room filled with art work and models to show me his inspiration. As soon as I walked out I called my agent and said, 'I want to be part of this and we're going to have work hard on the audition process, because I don't want to mess it up'." (source)

"Tarsem has such an incredible imagination and a creative side. He can make you see what it is he is seeing in his head through artwork and models so once you've seen it physically, it's very easy to buy into. Plus, we all have the imagination and creativity in our head. It's just a matter of letting it bleed out into the real world." (source)

"(having a skimpy costume and just being oiled up) really helps because when you're covered in oil and you are sticky and stuck to stuff on the set, you're a pretty miserable individual. At that particular moment, Theseus was a miserable individual so it helped enormously. I'm a big fan of costume to help get into character. I think it does a wonderful job and I embrace it entirely even though it was an uncomfortable experience certainly, you've gotta use it." (source)

[on Immortals' changes to Greek mythology] "Well, Tarsem decided to make his own story, his own movie, his own thing. He didn't want to tie into too closely to the classic mythology, and in that I think it gives us more freedom. But ultimately the point of all mythology is to get that message of the oppressed and fighting against the odds and coming out on top, and that is still a very strong message in this. It's just Tarsem's interpretation of the myth, as opposed to the classic interpretation." (source)

"(Tarsem) is full of energy, and someone who is very passionate about the project. When I first read the script I thought, okay, there are some major holes here and I'm not too sure about it. It was still very much being worked on. My agent told me, 'I understand the script isn't where it should be right now, but go meet the director.' And Tarsem had a whole room filled with artwork that he had culled from the internet and from books and all sorts, and he was painting this picture of what the world was. It really sold me because he's obviously so passionate about it, and it wasn't just some half-assed thing. He was actually designing a world to live in, and as an actor that's the kind of thing you want from a director. You want a guy who's creating it all and has a hand on every aspect of it. So when it comes to questions which you need to ask him, he's got the answers.  Taking out just one aspect of an actor's performance can change the character entirely, so you're really taking a risk as an actor to go through that, and you trust the director to portray you as you intended to be portrayed." (source)

[on not knowing how CGI will come out] "Well, you always take the risk. You never know what the final product is going to be because there's the editing process, and anything can change. The one thing that you may shoot on any film, the whole story can be changed by moving some scenes around and changing the order of things. Taking out just one aspect of an actor's performance can change the character entirely, so you're really taking a risk as an actor to go through that, and you trust the director to portray you as you intended to be portrayed. This sort of job really didn't make it any more of a risk, and I trusted Tarsem implicitly. He knew what his world was. And as much as we did do with CGI, we did have that immediate environment around us at all times, a very elaborately detailed set. And it was only the deep background that was CGI. Tarsem always brought in artwork and scale models and everything and showed us exactly where we were and what we were doing." (source)

[on Immortals' impact on his stock as an action star] "I think it'll certainly have an effect. If everyone loves this movie and there's a good bit of action it, with all the complex choreography, naturally, people will be keen if they do like the movie and like my performance in it, to see me in other action roles. So I think it will have a major effect. You've just got to hope everything goes down well and everyone likes it." (source)

[on injuries during Immortals' making] "Yeah nothing dramatic just a few stones in my feet or the bottom of my feet." (source)

[on how he felt while doing Immortals] "Bad ass and hungry." (source)

[on buffed physique having an impact on his performance] "Yeah it's like wearing a permanent costume. When you put on a costume you do feel different and a part of the character is more expressive in you. I essentially was wearing my costume because I barley had a costume." (source)

"When I first read the (Immortals) script I wasn't that convinced initially. Then I went to speak with the director Tarsem and after I walked out of that room I said I want to do this movie. I really, really want it." (source)

"(Tarsem) had all his visuals all set and his passion. Basically he had an idea of what he wanted and that in itself, when you walk into a room and you have a director who is actually and genuinely in charge of what he wants you feel safe. You say yes I want to be a part of this cause I  know no matter what it's going on it going to end up great." (source)

"There were a lot of changes (in Immortals script). … It was an organic process and that in itself is the nature of these things when dealing with creative minds. It should be organic and it should have the ability to evolve. It made it a wonderful process and very exciting." (source)

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