The supernatural ‘Push’

Meghan Bogardus

Chris Evans, Camilla Belle, Nate Mooney and Dakota Fanning take a break from filming. Photo courtesy of Summit Entertainment

Credit: DKS Editors

The one thing actor Chris Evans doesn’t worry about is being typecast. Evans, who has also starred in two “Fantastic Four” movies, now plays Nick Gant, a loner with the ability to move objects (and people) with his mind, in the science fiction/action film, “Push.”

“Push” is about people who have superpowers and the special underground branch of government called Division that is hunting them down to form a super army. While “Push” could be compared to Evans’ other work, he doesn’t see the similarities.

“The only similarity is that they have superpowers,” Evans said. “Outside of that, the story, the character evolution, the look of the film, obviously location – I really didn’t see any similarities.”

Evans added that while being typecast should be a concern, it shouldn’t be the only factor when considering a role.

“It’s something you want to be aware of, but if the pieces of the puzzle fit, if it’s the right film and it’s a challenging role, despite the fact that I have done a few of those, it would be hard to say no,” Evans said.

Co-star Camilla Belle, who plays Kira Hudson, a “pusher” or someone who can force others to do things, agreed, adding that she didn’t believe the film really fit the sci-fi label at all.

“The director, Paul McGuigan looked at ‘Push’ in a really natural way,” she said. “I think it also touched on so many different genres. There’s action aspects, there’s drama aspects, there’s romance, thriller. There’s a lot of aspects of the film that I don’t think that it’s specifically sci-fi.”

Belle added that the movie didn’t become an action movie until after filming, but the action was something she really enjoyed.

“I have to say I love it,” Belle said. “I felt quite tough. I felt like I could really handle myself now.”

Both actors agreed that “Push” shied away from the sci-fi genre with the naturalness of the fight sequences and special effects. Evans said that the director stepped out of the realms of CGI and green screen and did many of the special effects with “stunt men and some clever camera work.”

Evans added this process was helped by location where the movie was filmed: Hong Kong.

Since neither actor had been there, both actors said they were fond of the location.

“I have never been to Asia before. It was a huge dream of mine that I got to fulfill,” Belle said.

Evans said the atmosphere of Hong Kong was also a big help when it came to preparing for his role.

“It was an isolating thing,” Evans said. “Luckily, we shot in a foreign place, where I didn’t know anybody. I was out of my element, given the fact that I wasn’t able to rehearse the way I normally do.”

Evans said his isolation was comparable to the isolation that his character Nick felt while hiding underground. He also said that being in Hong Kong helped him overcome the challenge of working without a lot of rehearsal.

“To be honest, the environments around me provided a lot of the rehearsal time I needed,” he said.

Outside of being in Hong Kong, both Belle and Evans said working with the cast that included Dakota Fanning and Djimon Hounsou was another perk.

“We were all very different ages and very different people, and we learned a lot from each other,” Belle said.

Evans said it was really easy to bond with everyone, especially Fanning, whom he worked with closely.

“She’s a little firecracker,” he said of Fanning. “Her maturity level was somewhere in the 30s, while my maturity level is somewhere around 12; we got along swimmingly.”

Belle also spoke of her rapport with Fanning, saying, “I think we really bonded over the fact that we’ve been working our whole lives and kind of learned on the job.”

Overall, Evans said the entire cast got along well.

“Camilla was amazing,” he said. “The three of us (Belle and Fanning) had a great rapport, and then when Djimon showed up, it just kind of completed the circle.”

Belle added that working with Hounsou was something she enjoyed.

“Djimon was a huge inspiration of mine and I got to work with him, and I am really – and still am – overjoyed about that,” she said.

Next up for Belle is a film called “Á Deriva” (Adrift) in her native language, Portuguese. Though Belle said she would love to do another action movie, she is just going to wait to see what comes, something that has been omnipresent in the roles she has portrayed over the years.

“I’m not trying to make any specific type of film,” Belle said, “They’ve been very different (films) and very different characters and different scenarios. That’s what keeps me going and keeps me intrigued with my job.”

Evans also said he is happy to keep up with whatever his job throws at him.

“As long as I can keep on doing this, you know, I’m not after fame or glory or money, I just want to be able to do what I love and not have to get a real job,” he said.

Contact all correspondent Meghan Bogardus at [email protected].