How Infinity Pool's Alexander Skarsgård Shot The Movie's Wild, Hallucinatory Sequences

SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains mild spoilers for Infinity Pool. If you have not yet seen the film, proceed at your own risk!

In writer/director Brandon Cronenberg’s Infinity Pool, protagonist James Foster, played by Alexander Skarsgård, goes on one hell of a trippy ride. With the character learning about a special kind of lawlessness to which only the extremely wealthy have access in the fictional nation of La Tolqa, the movie goes to some wild places with sex and violence, and it features some head-spinning hallucinatory sequences. It all makes for a pretty crazy cinematic experience – and filming it was evidently a lot of fun for the film’s star.

Following the movie’s premiere at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival earlier this month, I had a chance to talk with stars Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth during a virtual press day, and I took the opportunity to inquire about two of Infinity Pool’s craziest montages: James getting cloned for the first time, and the principal characters imbibing a fake hallucinogen called Ekki Gate. Visceral and intense as these moments in the film are, Skarsgård explained that actually filming them was more technical than one might think, but still enjoyable. Said the actor,

Shooting those sequences, it's kind of boring 'cause they're very technical. I love those in the movie and with the music and they're so kind of... it evokes something quite interesting in you. Shooting it is definitely less I wanna say romantic, but less tantalizing. It's technical, but also those days were super fun on set 'cause Brandon [Cronenberg] and Karim Hussain, his DP, they've worked together for many, many years. They are like little kids playing with LEGO on set.

According to the Infinity Pool star, there was quite a lot of aesthetic experimentation that went into the creation of these special scenes – which pair extreme behaviors with intense colors and shifting lighting.. Rather than going into the day knowing exactly how everything was going to be filmed, Brandon Cronenberg and cinematographer Karim Hussain played around with different techniques on set, and they used a wide variety of methods to best make the movie pop.

Continuing, Alexander Skarsgård expressed that he was impressed by what the filmmakers were able to achieve on set – particularly because the various effects were done practically instead of in post-production with visual effects and editing tools:

They played around with so many different shots, different filters, different liquids, and weird mirrors and boxes that they wanted us to step into 'cause they would shoot it and it was very creative and innovative and tactile 'cause it was all done on set in camera as opposed to in post with CGI. So I was very excited about shooting those sequences.

Infinity Pool is now playing in theaters nationwide, having been given a wide release this past Friday. The movie has earned terrific reviews (read our CinemaBlend review out of the Sundance Film Festival), and even though it’s January, it seems destined to be considered one of the best horror movies of the year. Once you’ve seen it, check out our analysis of the intense ending, and start preparing for your next fear fest in theaters with our Upcoming Horror Movies guide.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.