Now You See Me Isla Fisher Interview

Isla Fisher  joined co-star Jesse Eisenbrg in London for a Q&A event to promote their magical new film Now You See Me. The film has already worked it’s magic on the US Box Office prompting immediate talk of a sequel. Here’s what famously flame haired star Isla had to say:

How would you describe Now You See Me?

It’s a heist movie, it’s an action thriller. It’s a little Ocean’s Eleven meets The Prestige, with the illusions being these crimes were committing.

Tell us a bit about your character?

I play Henley she’s an escapologist, her role in the four horsemen is to get them out of tricky situations.

How much personality did you add to the character that wasn’t in the script?

We didn’t want to step on the fact the four horsemen were this like mysterious, illusive and enigmatic group. They’re morally ambiguous so we didn’t want to add too much character, but we wanted to add some spice so you got a bit of comedy in there too.

What made working with your director Louis Leterrier special?

Just how comfortable he was with us improvising and coming up with ideas. The way he sot the movie the camera was moving at all times. It was sometimes on a wire it was other times on a crane, but it was always transient. So it was a liberating experience because he was moving the camera around so much, so we got so many takes and got to try a million different things. We got very comfortable being on stage by the end, despite Jesse and I both not naturally being that comfortable on stage.

What can people expect form the Magic in the film?

I know people haven’t seen the movie yet but there’s a phenomenal magic trick in there that was all David Copperfield’s idea. It’s the bubble trick, it’s actually one of he few magic tricks in the movie that’s CGI and not a trick you can actually do. But the technology is being developed and it will be a magic trick that you will be able to perform soon. That was definitely something which came from David Copperfield’s imagination.

How did you train for the role?

I studied a lady magician called Dorothy Dietrich. She was the first American lady magician to catch a bullet between her teeth. That wasn’t something I practiced at home, despite probably a lot of people wanting me to.

Did you ever have a trick go wrong on set?

As you can see in the trailer I’m in a tank at one point chained underwater, which of course is not a dream come true for any actress. I actually ran out of oxygen when we were shooting that and my chain got stuck and I thought I was going to die in a swimming suit, bloated behind glass. So that was pretty awful. I didn’t have a signal to let people know I was in trouble, that’s how it went wrong. I doggy paddled down to the bottom and set myself free, so in the end it all turned out okay. I didn’t know I could have a stunt person until the very end of the shoot.

How good are you and the rest of the cast at magic now?  Who is the best?

I think I could definitely do a kids party for 5 year olds and Jesse could do one for 10 year olds. Jesse has some skills. Dave Franco is amazing; he can chop a banana in half by throwing a playing card. He could make you a fruit salad if he was here right now. Jesse was great too but Dave picked up the dexterity really quickly. Woody Harrelson is a mentalist in the movie and he kept reading everybody’s minds. At the beginning it was super annoying. He was always like “Hey Isla.. think of a number between one and ten” and I was like “Woody, please stop!”. Mark Ruffalo actually got Woody really well with a practical joke. Woody believed he’d hypnotised Mark into thinking everything was the colour blue, Mark played along a bit but I guess he was only pretending. So we had some laughs on set. I’d say I was the weakest magician of all because I don’t have the stamina to keep something going. I tried with the ping pong ball, I tried with the cards but then I got super frustrated and just gave up.

Why do you think people love magic so much?

I think we live in very uncertain, crazy world to believe in an overriding force that could equalize things is a very alluring concept spiritually. It’s nice having something you can’t solve that feels greater than you. It’s a nice notion.

What’s it like working with Woody and Jesse in particular?

The two of them are so talented together it’s like watching Laurel and Hardy or something, they’re just perfect together. We would just watch them and laugh sometimes on set it was great.

The film has a complex plot; did you find it easy to follow when you read the script?

I was occasionally a bit confused even during shooting about how we were able to pull of some things. Our character’s the horsemen are robbing banks and giving money back to the audience through these illusions.

We heard you re-shot some parts of the film, is there anything you’re happy changed?

I was a bit uncomfortable with some things originally. The writing was a bit too on the nose at times. For example they had this scene in the movie where we were giving money back to people in New Orleans whose homes were missing. But we were saying specifically about hurricane Katrina.

We’ve also just seen you on Arrested Development, how much fun was it juggling romances with Michael Cera and Jason Bateman on season 4?

Don’t forget I also made out with Will Arnett’s character too! They did not tell me when I took the gig exactly how much whoring my character would do! There are still a few members of the Bluth family I haven’t made out with yet… but not many.

Are we going to see the resolution of that love triangle in season 5 or perhaps an Arrested Development movie?

Netflix won’t reveal the numbers of how many people watched it. Allegedly it was a huge success, that’s what it’s reported to be. When we shot it all Mitch kept saying this is what we’re going to do in the movie this is how your character is going to get resolved. Obviously I can’t reveal how it would work out but yeah I would love to make the movie of that, I had such a great time on that show.

 Now You See Me will be magically appearing in cinemas across the UK on 3rd July. 

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