Actor Cillian Murphy has starred in everything from big-budget blockbusters like “The Dark Knight Rises” and “In Time” to low-budget indies like “28 Days Later” and – his latest project – “Red Lights.” However, they are all the same to him.
“It is not about the budget,” Murphy said during a recent interview with pingroof.com. “It is about the story. If it has got a good story, then I am in. Whatever the resources the director has, it is up to him or her to use those the best that he or she can. It has just got to have a good story and be something that I have not done before. That is what I am after. I have no plan nor strategy. It is just whatever arrives arrives.”
In “Red Lights,” which opens Friday, Aug. 3 exclusively at Harkins Shea 14, Sigourney Weaver plays a psychologist who, with her assistant (Murphy), studies paranormal activity. This eventually leads them to investigate a world-renowned psychic (Robert De Niro) who has resurfaced years after his toughest critic mysteriously passed away.
“To me, this film is about a guy who goes on a journey of self-acceptance,” Murphy said. “It is also a film about obsession. I think that everybody is familiar with obsession and, in playing this part, I guess I saw how we are all susceptible to it and how knowing and accepting yourself is a very important thing.”
Needless to say, Murphy was drawn to “Red Lights” by its screenplay, which he calls “unusual, surprising and refreshing” – three qualities that he believes are rare to find these days. The actor added that most projects that come his way tend to be at least a little predictable. Of course, he also did not mind the opportunity to work alongside Weaver and De Niro.
“They are legends to anyone of my generation,” Murphy said. “It was a huge honor to get to work with them – particularly with Sigourney. It was important that we had a warmth in our relationship for the story to work. Luckily, we really clicked together. She is such a wonderful lady – a very funny lady and a very caring person – so we got along great.”
Murphy believes that spending time with one’s co-star is an important aspect of the acting process as it affords one the chance to gain a level of trust in that person while also to learn what makes them laugh, which, in turn, generates authenticity. Murphy is also grateful to “Red Lights’” writer/director Rodrigo Cortés for allowing him an opportunity to take viewers on this character’s journey.
“He is a real talent,” Murphy explained. “To see somebody who has the understanding of the vernacular of film so early in his career is astonishing. I thought that ‘Buried’ was an amazing achievement for him as a director. You always want to work with someone who has a strong vision or a strong voice. He has both.”
“Red Lights” (R – 113 minutes) opens Friday, Aug. 3 exclusively at Harkins Shea 14. Visit FirstLook.com for specific showtimes.