John David Washington on his starring role in the new Christopher Nolan film, 'Tenet'

The actor talks to Peter Travers about the making of the film "Tenet."
19:14 | 09/14/20

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Transcript for John David Washington on his starring role in the new Christopher Nolan film, 'Tenet'
Fire everybody this. Peter Travers welcome to pop where we tell you what's happening in the movies and in many way. And it. In which John David Watson in my guest stars is kind the only movie. In the movie John David it's gotten basically. Saying the world is movie directed by Chris. I see this business in this world we live it. Tunnel birds and how he's doing you feel that way. Shall. Well spigots of the character roles on the trades we did so according to what Christopher Nolan wrote. I the Arab league world they'll pretty good about. Singing the movie industry. Give us sir Christopher Christopher Nolan but I our bill orally good dumb. Knowing that the American beat are finally able to a saint. Well it can't you know I was in the end I went to an experience. What are you did you go the actual movie theaters. See that's what I want to do I want to get to and I haven't seen in IMAX. And I congratulate you want this because you both men answering actor. You you've had. You've all heard you know a box. And an all this time my friend. You're movies. Movie star until Jones. As the exhibit. Here right Japanese. Odds are actually happy that he sought to dig execute. Well yeah he saw out. Well you know it. Is it's many things this movie and there's no way to really get Oilers are not do that and tried to do well. This is a game the way you want to go back and see them. Filled screen. There's excitement. You're kind. James Bond in. The students. People who love the company is seeing they say. Digi C John David and suits. You get to eat well. I I'm not gonna confirm or deny us. And he didn't. Fit everybody says. Yeah. Both political for public record I'm not gonna confirm or deny keeping them booked up that's a shout out to Jeffrey who who designed those suits who. You know we're really newly complimentary of my hard work and not eating. So I idea really appreciated. Where those suits and when the clothes on I honestly to war with that when it did for me. This was an interesting process for me Indian villages. Mark my way in my nature points of the character was. Sort of not it was and how are usually do things this is a cavity. In of the training for two months before we started principal photography that really gave me a lot of information about with a guy. Know something about those suits in his own you know his clothing that's. Soto of they do grow up like armor you know alone you know as a lawyer going to for Barack going to toward the past that was is commerce a lot of a lot of those things the exterior of them I was able to. Give you give me information on how to internalize such character that protects. Yeah you're talking about the train there are stocks. Are doing right from the opening scene. This move he is just. Wind actually you know this may cost 200 million is and it's all on the screen access to courts and a 190000008. Year. Thank you yeah you're right there. That the. Because the movie is dealing with in birds. This is as close comment for those people let us sleep characteristics. In the mid now what in birds and it. How things go back and forth at the same time but you actually. Do on these stunts wearer. You go back and sports. And EU. I didn't trend. I don't care. It was bill is it was a grueling incredibly. Exhausting. And physically demanding. Once in a lifetime actually enjoyable experience. And yet yesterday it was if I loved every moment of it George Scotto. Who stunt coordinator for for a Christopher knows what with the firm for years now. Jackson's but now. Fight coordinator who's you know been on you know bullets will morals marvels. Productions. You know John wick. So when they were finding these moves together and for the first time. These moves I've never been done before never being constructed before. So the rules of inversion. The you had to re learn or on learn what you thought you knew about gravity what you thought you knew about just normal functionalities. Of the human body. And and and sort of now incorporate what you think you know into the rules of conversion so we had to literally start for Mike blinking from from walking to talk. Today in the throwing the punches in the snapping a the next in the martial arts. Aspect of it it was an incredible unique incredibly unique experience. But it was so exciting Indian invigorating because the knowing these these seen these these types of this type of movement. Is is now have been done before this is all fertile ground all fertile territory that were were or where. Operating on so that's really exciting to know any bruises to show for. Actually still have still some of Markham lying now is like now idea I could get out of bed the first month it was very tough media admitted today. What's up with the Chinese law or moved back. Home with you. Two. All the time I had I had to us with some of the wood the lines the statement. Learned I learned at home and with me on this is the first Hamas into a ball and Nancy Christopher at the hardest actually the hardest day over the artists. Our thing about the don't meet with what was the -- heights aspect. The in Mumbai hadn't jumped. Well off onto a roof. An independent route. Opera roof and in jumping off. About now because I'm not really do with high so that's at some patients from Chris Nolan in the crew we got it done. But let's go while I was host here. Wait until that day you receding neck to mention Chris. I I forgot to tell you no good with heights. I amidst the tool won't we when they wrapped us that day and we and I know we got it in the camp and look at their there was a particular time were noses had he won and he adjusted me. Anyone in need it may do an action in say a couple lines for urgent over the roof over the balcony. I am I'm a professional and I take notes umpire act in a just no problem. We never had a problem just a follow through but some particular reason on this evening. Warm evening and on the high I was not taking the know well enough to like take eleven us on the move obligated guiding. He comes up to me stars laugh because he says -- wonder why we're taking the no easily agree with them. And I realized oh yours catered. And we let me get it and I said confirms our I was terrified. Of course that it Selma I had a few high you know you like is the same as you don't tell if you can't rattle our course tiger renal or say you know anything you know. You're. I can jump out of planes I can do whatever you needed to where did you eat your hall background help you with this. Let me you took a lot being is due in. Indeed I did in Al the will -- Bob background did give me with confidence and and knowing that I know how to from a buy to. Pain and discomfort. Round two grade to great degree. This was a little different because info ball most of the training must that most of the things you do. Art to advance the ball forward to score touched he vertical move immediately lateral movement is is essential as well you gotta be able to move sad sack. Let always full ward in this case in the rule in the rules and inversion. Had to like what advancing years is actually going the other way. So throwing a punch. Is now got to look ahead at the look the other way. Blocking opponents at the learn how to block another way so an entire N and really it's it's essentially my defense becomes offense. And my and my offense is is my defense mechanisms so its it was. It's so crazy way to learned. How to use my body in these asks if it were had to dig deep. Well we're all the actors stealing the same way you were doing this moody was that that kind of thing at the end of the day you all just back in the hotel. Yes we're all not colonized it loses it was quite not only been here we've or. We were hit an all isn't it that we always talk about like just the Nolan experience and what life is going to be elect. After this how won't be the same and that's that's that has nothing to do with like this Howland be received in the fact an annulment film was actually the process of its own. You know we are we are too low we're all there for the right reasons and we all wanted to be there left to serve our purpose of the film you know in booted it did it was challenging. He asked a lot of us you know physically I mean. She is getting thrown around a neck car you know and and yet she did her own stunts is well. Solo rob Pattinson who's sneaking athletic is that area Atlantic on and light sweet he let. He's like given the when a movie star so but even he was feeling. You know the where terror of this of the of the physical demands of of this movie. What about this sue Reeve broke demands the movie when you first got this. What did you say oh yeah. Fun I get it yeah I can do this. Yeah FBI dislike. One honest I acted after that so it's a before I was to read it once those like. The longest ever advertisements on script and then. I I I guess also delusional. I said exactly would you just say I love yeah I got no problem this is I got this look I'm ready to work. And as the day went Owen as has hours and ended up. Are realized how much I do indeed as the came back down a reality our allies Indian anything. Well weapon when I was really connected to where the for the characters. That the concept at first but I did understand the way in which was of the camera and lens. These are the characters who were very clear and Meehan and and relatable and I really loved and in them connected with it so that kind of the way in was through the eyes of the protagonists. Elect us in the physical. Did the repetitions of and the training really help me understand the concept. As we you know your your costly trying to play catch up to a Christopher Nolan he was very patient. With answering questions everything that we needed he provides dessert I'm leaning that way. But. It took a lot of time to cats but to do more. Now with of the physical movement in understanding of what we're doing with backwards on the concept of a backwards punch and kicked the company with the concept as a whole. Look at the people you have been meaning sir can grant. In the mean none of the guys should know the answers to these questions SR you know. Did you ever try any of these. Little mystery out of him. What he you know he's he's sober he's brilliant actor and currencies such intelligent human being. It was encouraging. Sonoma maybe feel really good about myself and he would pass you know same kind of questions Iowa and he's like Scott saw act. I thought up a little more secure about that like he does he Ito would tell you how. It's hard to track this this story in this film I mean that's a sit to the way we want to you know to tend to act the way we want to do our jobs we have to be as specific as possible. So lump sum the most impressive work of ever seeing though was by hand in fact it was a scene. We did where we both talked backwards and not only did he do that. He did it in a Russian accent. That's incredible. Talking backwards and a Russian accent as the system he's he's talking to different languages. In an accent it's crazy. Oh when you're you're working with an arsenal. Were. Yeah I am about. Experience. I think. Yes and unknowingly soles asked them all kinds of questions about much ado about nothing but he was very gracious and kind of Butler answered questions in. Talking about the experience as a love that movie. And in and I our party are brought in. Maybe it meets every day and work together every day really annoyed almost every ride apart some way to reference and via. Even if you didn't know. My. I speak to the audience when we look at ten. We are seeing things that's really going to be harder to do. In the future in the immediate future. That just opening machine is solid credit. Harry there's. A Lewis. Yeah. And those popular 3000 people per thousand plus people. And and Estonia. So you know I'm I'm I'm sure but I think that the movie industry the they may. I seem to figure out that they're gonna figure a way. Well it will be active reaches the patent. And this is the one that it's. Actually doing me because on the Labor Day weekend. Tenet was able in the United States and forty million arson or why would acknowledge shall what percent or 30% of the year. And to have made a 115. Million dollars overseas. Is also incredible. It's. Makes you hopeful. How this would happen and we can get back to business as usual. You still enjoy I agree. Enjoying making films aren't adding that of course I mean this is what I love to do I was in the idea situation. Of this rollout of the movie however. Maybe it's better in a lot of ways because you know from. People have a different appreciation. For the theater going experience because we've been in deprived of the salons in 67 months about. The and it was going to a movie theater so it's important to note that the so much medicine can be administered through these films. And two the movie going experience that form of escapism world. Or you relating to a character to a story that tests on that motivates you to do something with your life or to tenants to be more. Involved in your community whatever may motivate that but there is there there is great power and not storytelling still want to. Asked you just installing this what would you stated he. That haven't seen it yet I haven't seen him and they want to note from year. What to bicker error why is it they're going to see and why should they see why should they don't see why is it. You diamonds in it every minute. And it is. Is a unique and unique cinematic experience. It's the ultimate form of escapism. Where I can guarantee for two and a half hours he will not be thinking about anything else there was not a worry in the world then hopefully that the protagonist doesn't. You know on that you going to be so immersed into this film in the IMAX version of the T you're here literally gonna feel like you're there. And this globe trotting spy espionage thriller. You know that the seven different countries you're gonna miss traveling you're gonna appreciate. Travel you're gonna you know the the mafia coast one. The the boats to slicing across the that the Mediterranean Sea it's it's ever and it's. It's just it's just a beautiful it's right right and it is just a beautiful looking down even if you're not really. Understand and apply you're gonna love what you see and experience what you see in full effect bomb is great storytelling obviously I think come. As good as the trailer goes there's a line in his that says no trying to understand it feeling. And I highly recommend you continue that margin as you. As she watched the story in full those two and a half hours. Yes and you can you can Hewlett without getting bruised Lex yeah. Yeah and now you've been exactly. Rocket around by doing. Well you know David JD what Everett is bad we're calling day. This year you know I'll always song you we're just horrible the last time. I only giving me one line of who lose their mantra song all you yeah yeah you know. What was it this. You know I never to martz did that big and ray gave us one more line also eventually. When we Judah interviews have holes. New oh really good to me that same dismal because he considered he's not he's witnessed it you know. Bond not. Well. Yeah luck. Thousand. It was never too much what's the and my my at my. House day. And you know is an ad man. My. But it's in much the league who are weighing more than expected. You know I could lead with a smile on my days. Leaving Washington they think so much for.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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