Following his black-and-white passion project Mank, David Fincher returns to the world of vibrant, slick thrillers with The Killer. An adaptation of Alexis Nolent’s graphic novel series, the Netflix neo-noir marks a reteam for Fincher with his Se7en screenwriter Andrew Kevin Walker, with Michael Fassbender leading the film as a cold-blooded assassin, joined by Tilda Swinton. With filming having wrapped up at the end of March, a 2023 release is in the cards and now the first behind-the-scenes look has arrived.
Courtesy of the first episode of the new season of Michael Fassbender: Road to Le Mans, which tracks his other passion in life, we get a few minutes to peek behind the LA studio shoot of The Killer after its multi-country location production. In it, one can see a number of set-ups utilizing LED walls to fill in for green screens, though you can still spot some of those being used as well. Fassbender also opened up about the shoot and working with Fincher.
“It felt really good to go back to work,” the actor said. “The film that I did before that was just before lockdown [Next Goal Wins], but that was 2019, so I was definitely ready to go back to work. With somebody of David’s caliber, it was a very special opportunity for me––quite a few locations over a five-month period. What was interesting for me was taking the experience from what we’re doing on track and bringing it on set, especially with somebody like David who films very precisely and everything is, you know, dealing in fractions in terms of how you deliver things and movement and exactly how the frame is occupied, if you will.”
He adds, “You have to step on and deliver in a period of time and David, he’s looking for perfection and to do that within a take, however long that take is. It might be 40 seconds. It might be six minutes long, but within that time frame you’re looking to do everything exactly as it should be. You’ve taken on board all the notes and there’s plenty of them to digest, but in the moment when you’re trying to deliver those notes, you’re not thinking at all. It was a real honor. I felt like I learned a lot from him. It was a full-on shoot, very long hours sometimes six-day weeks, so there was literally not enough time for me to get into car and do any training whatsoever.”
Watch below, beginning around the 2:30-minute mark, and read Nick Newman’s recent interview with cinematographer Erik Messerschmidt on shooting David Fincher’s The Killer and Michael Mann’s Ferrari here.
The Killer will arrive in 2023.