Following some huge roles from Diego Luna, between Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and Netflix’s Narcos: Mexico, the actor stepped back into the arthouse space for Wander Darkly, a romantic drama about a longtime couple being faced with tragedy following a sudden car accident. Luna stars alongside Sienna Miller. The movie takes its characters down a rabbit hole of time and changing tenses, as they contend with their pasts in hindsight to where they find themselves years later.
Wander Darkly is completely it’s own thing, but its concept does follow a line that Charlie Kaufman has explored with Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. The movie, written and directed by Tara Miele, simulates consciousness with the actors playing out scenes in their character’s pasts as they comment on how things played out with the hindsight of the present. It's complicated stuff. When I spoke to the actors for CinemaBlend, Diego Luna broke down bringing these moments to life:
It was so demanding and scary. It’s difficult to play in the present with truthness, now pretend to play two realities that are happening – two parallel realities and in both you need to understand why you are there and you need to be true to the moment and they have to make sense and it’s a terrifying experience for an actor.
Although the actors make it look effortless on screen in Wander Darkly, it was a tough process for them both to wrap their heads around. On top of the pair playing an established couple who had known each other for years, in our interview Diego Luna (who is currently working on his Star Wars Disney+ series, which will officially be called Andor) talked about how “terrifying” it was to work on a movie with a number of timelines in the mix. It’s a situation not far from what actors in Christopher Nolan movies like Inception and Tenet may have gone through as well. Thankfully in both instances, the brains behind the script were right there with the actors to clear up their visions. He continued,
The beauty here is that it was teamwork. You were never alone. It was about the understanding Sienna and I had and the way we could navigate this together and gladly Tara [Miele] was the writer because imagining a director that didn’t write the script would have been a catastrophe. But Tara knew exactly what she wanted and what she wrote there, why these moments were happening and the reflection was pretty much her own, so that saved us through the process, but it was scary.
Wander Darkly will be available in select theaters and on demand this Friday, December 11. Stay here on CinemaBlend for more exclusive interviews.