David Ayer on the ‘crazy, awesome opportunity’ of reinventing Schwarzenegger in ‘Ten’

11.17.12 5 years ago

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Speaking with HitFix this week about his collaboration with Jake Gyllenhaal on the cop drama “End of Watch,” director David Ayer had a few choice things to say about Arnold Schwarzenegger from the set of the new film “Ten.”

“He’s f***ing amazing,” Ayer said. “He’s blowing my mind. It’s weird, no one’s really asked him to act in this manner before. People’s minds are going to be blown…no one’s going to see this coming.”

Ayer has said his goal was to reinvent Schwarzenegger with the film, which features the former California governor (and, of course, ubiquitous 80s action star) as commander of an elite DEA squad set to raid a cartel’s safe house. Though that’s merely cover for a heist involving the theft and sale of millions in assets. It was loosely based on Agatha Christie’s classic story “Ten Little Indians.”

Ayer said he’s attracted to the idea of re-imagining actors, as he set out to do with Gyllenhaal on “End of Watch” this year. “I like playing against expectations and sort of using people’s perceptions against them,” he said. “This idea of re-inventing [Schwarzenegger] was such a huge challenge. I just saw a crazy, awesome opportunity.”

But the opportunity to work with his childhood hero was also a major draw, as Schwarzenegger looks to rebuild his film career in the wake of politics and scandal.

“All the movies that made me want to be in the business, he seemed to star in,” Ayer said. “At first I was real intimidated. I was just like, ‘Oh my God. It’s f***ing Arnold.’ But he’s a good guy. I got over that and we’re in friendship now and he’s an unbelievably hard worker…He’s totally trusting and it’s a great collaboration and he’s such a nice guy. There’s no star stuff at all. He’s eating lunch with the crew. He’s just a regular guy.”

“Ten” also stars Sam Worthington, Josh Holloway, Terrence Howard and Olivia Williams. It’s set to hit theaters some time next year from Open Road Films, which also distributed “End of Watch.”

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