‘Encounter’ Star Riz Ahmed on Using Candy to Keep His 9-Year-Old Co-Star Awake on Set (Video)

TIFF 2021: “If we were gonna make our days, he needed candy. And he needed it now,” actor tells TheWrap about Aditya Geddada

“Encounter” star Aditya Geddada just turned 9 a few days ago and had his first movie premiere at the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival — and his co-star Riz Ahmed told TheWrap he couldn’t have done it without a certain sweet treat on set.

“What role would you say candy played in your process as an actor?” Ahmed asked the young star during the cast’s interview with TheWrap’s editor in chief, Sharon Waxman, during a virtual interview for TIFF.

“I think that it would be my stunt double,” Geddada joked.

“He had the gun to our head,” Ahmed added. “If we were gonna make our days, he needed candy. And he needed it now. There were a lot of candy ransoms being played.” 

Ahmed recounted one scene for the movie that involved a night shoot on a mountain. Geddada used up all the heating packs to keep warm, and ended up getting so hot that he started “falling asleep mid shot.”

“How are we going to get a full take of him awake?” Ahmed recalled thinking. “And at that moment, we were like, ‘THE CANDY!’” Ahmed ended up digging in Geddada’s pockets for candy and feeding it to him, which resulted in the young actor’s doe-eyed look in the scene.

“When I got home, I had a tummy ache,” Geddada said.

“Encounter” follows two brothers who embark on a journey with their father, who is trying to protect them from an alien threat. The film stars Ahmed, Geddada, Octavia Spencer, Janina Gavankar and Lucien-River Chauhan, and was directed by Michael Pearce. Pearce wrote the screenplay with Joe Barton.

Watch TheWrap’s interview with the cast via the video above.