Getting inside the mind of a serial killer is no easy feat. But bringing the Riddler to life in Matt Reeves’ The Batman seems to have taken a heavy toll on Paul Dano’s well-being. While speaking with Entertainment Weekly about his role in the highly-anticipated reboot, Dano revealed the downside to committing to his character so thoroughly. He also shared why this was the right superhero project for him. Paul Dano reveals.
“[I was] waiting for the right one or ones, where you’re in collaboration with people and material that excites you,” said Dano. “And this was definitely that. I was totally surprised, frankly, that [the script] was so good. I felt immediately [on] page one, page two, you could tell that the director was seeing the film that they wrote. You could feel, even in the action scenes, the type of energy behind the fighting or the violence, it was just very fully conceived.”
Dano also appreciated how Reeves made the Riddler “more terrifying” in this film than in previous incarnations. However, his efforts to deliver a memorable performance resulted in a few sleepless nights along the way.
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“There were some nights around that I probably didn’t sleep as well as I would’ve wanted to just because it was a little hard to come down from this character,” added Dano. “It takes a lot of energy to get there. And so you almost have to sustain it once you’re there because going up and down is kind of hard.”
It wasn’t just the Riddler’s maniacal personality that Dano found to be exhausting. The character’s costume also posed its own set of challenges during production. In the film, the villain covers himself in plastic wrap to avoid leaving DNA at his crime scenes. But according to Reeves, this left Dano’s face “beet red” after a take.
“My head was just throbbing with heat,” recalled Dano. “I went home that night, after the first full day in that, and I almost couldn’t sleep because I was scared of what was happening to my head. It was like compressed from the sweat and the heat and the lack of oxygen. It was a crazy feeling.”
The Batman will hit theaters on March 4.
Are you looking forward to watching Dano’s performance in the film? Let us know in the comment section below!
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