Indian-origin actor Dev Patel said he is scared to say yes to a big budget film because his last blockbuster movie was critically savaged.
The 26-year-old actor was thrust into Hollywood stardom in 2008 after starring in Danny Boyle’s Oscar-winning film Slumdog Millionaire, and quickly gained a role in M Night Shyamalan USD 150 million fantasy adventure The Last Airbender.
Upon its release in 2010, the film was derided by critics and won five of Hollywood’s least coveted prizes, the Golden Raspberry Awards. Patel said his experiences on set have made him wary of agreeing to star in blockbusters, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
“I know what I’m afraid of playing: those big studio movies. “After Slumdog, I did a film that was not well received at all (The Last Airbender). “The budget of Slumdog was like the budget of the craft services of this movie. And I completely felt overwhelmed by the experience. I felt like I wasn’t being heard.”
His latest film, “Lion”, in which he plays Saroo Brierley, a child adopted from India by Australian parents who seeks out his biological family using Google Earth, has fared rather better with critics and audiences, with some even tipping it as an early Oscar contender. Lion also stars Nicole Kidman and is directed by Garth Davis.
Dev Patel says he spent an hour looking at himself in the mirror for his role in his latest film Lion. Patel told Empire magazine: “It required an energy shift. I’m a super-hyperactive kind of dude and the role required a level of stillness. Saroo had this emotional pain, this weight.
I spent eight months prepping and it was all a process of introspection. “I travelled around India on trains to get a feel of what it would be like, I wrote diaries, I visited orphanages. Garth would get me to stare in the mirror for an hour. It’s amazing what you can see when you stop for a moment and really try to look inside yourself.”