M. Night Shyamalan Reveals Why Guardians Of The Galaxy’s Dave Bautista Was The Right Person To Lead His Next Film

Many moviegoers may know Dave Bautista as Drax the Destroyer from Guardians of the Galaxy, but the former pro wrestler is far from a one-trick pony. M. Night Shyamalan certainly seems to think so. When the lauded director began the casting search for his next film project, he knew that Bautista was the only man for the job, and didn't waste any time bringing him aboard.  

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, M. Night Shyamalan shared his reasoning behind the casting of Dave Bautista in his next film, which is titled Knock at the Cabin. Apparently Blade Runner 2049 had something to do with it, with the director saying: 

I was really taken by what Denis [Villeneuve] and Dave did in that scene in Blade Runner. He was still in a way that was powerful. There’s a type of stillness where you’re not doing nothing; you’re doing everything and you’re still. Your essence of what you’re thinking is coming off your body. I always tell actors that I can definitely shoot the back of you. If you watch the back of Heath Ledger at the beginning of The Dark Knight, the second I saw his back, I thought, ‘I’m seeing one of the greatest performances ever.’ I could see it just from the way he was standing. Every cell in your body will do what it’s supposed to do if you’re thinking something correctly. So don’t just be blank. You have to think it.

No one can argue that Dave Bautista doesn’t have a strong presence. Although the actor began his career as a WWE wrestler, he quickly established himself as a solid performer outside of the ring with comedic performances in blockbuster movies like Guardians of the Galaxy. However, it was his dramatic turn in Blade Runner 2049 that made many critics and fans aware of his versatility. Bautista displayed an elevated level of spatial awareness and physicality that many actors pay cold hard cash to learn at theatre school. This ability to embody stillness made quite the impression on M. Night Shyamalan. The filmmaker explained: 

Don’t show me anything because your body is going to show me. And Dave was embodying all of this philosophy in that scene, and I thought he was a really unusual person because he is who he is and he’s that big. I didn’t know who he was at that time, and he stuck in my head. So when this script came, I was like, ‘There seems to be one guy who can play this giant human being and do the stillness.’ So I asked Dave.

Dave Bautista said yes, and the rest is history. Although he starred in Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead, Knock at the Cabin will give Bautista the chance to play a lead dramatic role and continue to cement his status as a powerhouse performer in the entertainment industry. So far he's the only actor attached to the project.

Knock at the Cabin has not entered the production process yet, but the film is scheduled to shock fans with a signature Shyamalan twist on February 3, 2023. Ready to go the theater sooner rather than later? Check out what upcoming movies are laid out for 2022. 

Rachel Romean

Actor, singer, and occasional dancer. Likes: fashion, books, old buildings. Dislikes: cilantro, the NJ Turnpike, sneaker wedges.