Working with Terrence Malick on “A Hidden Life” was unlike anything actors Valerie Pachner and August Diehl have done before, especially because there were no breaks during production of the historical film.
“There are no breaks for light changes or counter shots, you are always on the whole time — that makes you after a few weeks just living it,” Diehl told TheWrap’s Steve Pond at the Toronto International Film Festival. “You live the whole thing, you are breathing it, you are not thinking abut particular scenes — you think about the life. You think about the hay that needs to be changed or working on a farm.
“I remember one day, I was laying on a meadow sleeping because I was so exhausted and the camera was here,” he said, pointing to his face, “and they are filming everything they can have.”
“I think what he likes most is if life is happening in front of his camera,” Pachner added.
Malick wrote and directed the historical drama about Franz Jäggerstätter, an Austrian farmer who refused to fight for the Nazis in World War II. It first debuted at the Cannes Film Festival in May to rave reviews, a moment Diehl will always remember.
“It was the most emotional professional career moment in my whole entire life,” he said, adding that he was almost moved to tears when he saw the audience’s reaction to the film at Cannes.
The film has since played at Telluride Film Festival and Toronto, and will hit a bunch of other festivals before it will be theatrically released in the United States on December 13.
Watch the video above.
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