Andy Serkis on Star Wars: The Force Awakens "damaged" new villain
Information about the new characters of STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS has been trickling out little by little, but not much has been said about Andy Serkis' mysterious villain, Supreme Leader Snoke. However, Serkis was finally able to discuss his motion-captured character with Entertainment Weekly and provided a few details on the character's motivations, the secrecy surrounding him, as well as his physical appearance.
The look of Supreme Lead Snoke took quite a lot of time to nail down, in fact Andy Serkis said that "it’s the first time I’ve been on set not yet knowing what the character’s gonna look like. I mean, talk about secrecy!" Serkis was able collaboarate with J.J. Abrams on the final look of his character, which evolved and changed with Serkis' performance.
When we first started working on it, he had some rough notions of how Snoke was gonna look, but it really hadn’t been fully-formed and it almost came out of discussion and performance. We shot on set of course, and I was in the scenes I have with other actors, but the beauty of this process is you can go back and reiterate, keep informing and honing beats and moments, so J.J., after we shot last year, we’ve had a series of sessions where I’d be in London at The Imaginarium, my studio, while he’s been directing from L.A., and we’ve literally been creating further additions and iterations to the character. That’s been fascinating. And in the meantime I’ve been able to see the look and design of the character grow and change as the performances change. So it’s been really exciting in that respect.
Andy Serkis on his character of Supreme Leader Snoke:
Supreme Leader Snoke is quite an enigmatic character, and strangely vulnerable at the same time as being quite powerful,obviously he has a huge agenda. He has suffered a lot of damage. As I said, there is a strange vulnerability to him, which belies his true agenda, I suppose.
On why Supreme Leader Snoke couldn't be realized as a practical effect/make-up:
The scale of him, for instance, is one reason. He is large. He appears tall. And also just the facial design – you couldn’t have gotten there with prosthetics. It’s too extreme. Without giving too much away at this point, he has a very distinctive, idiosyncratic bone structure and facial structure. You could never have done it [in real life.]
It's only natural that a modern day Star Wars film would feature its fair share of visual effects, but Andy Serkis claims that Supreme Leader Snoke and Lupita Nyong’o's Maz Kanata are the only two performance-capture characters in the film. The reveal of Snoke will likely be saved for the film itself, but I can't wait to find out more about Snoke and how he plans to threaten the galaxy.
STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS opens on December 18, 2015.
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