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(Credit: Nicolas Genin)

Film

Ethan Hawke shares his thoughts on Richard Linklater

American actor Ethan Hawke has reached the top of his field with iconic performances in films like Dead Poets Society and Gattaca, among many others. After having recently portrayed the enigmatic innovator Nikola Tesla in an eponymous biopic, Hawke already has other projects lined up, including a part in the new Marvel series Moon Knight as well as a Viking epic called The Northman.

Throughout his career, Hawke has worked with several distinguished filmmakers. However, his collaboration with one such pioneer has resulted in some of the best work of his career. That director is none other than Richard Linklater, who cast Hawke in modern masterpieces such as the widely beloved Before Trilogy as well as the acclaimed 2014 opus Boyhood.

“I could make a case that Boyhood is a prequel to Before Sunrise – Ellar Coltrane is playing Richard Linklater’s surrogate and then I start playing Richard Linklater’s surrogate. It’s like the Marvel universe,” Hawke said in a recent Q&A session while discussing his thoughts about Linklater as well as his works.

Hawke also commented on the director’s ability to bring out the best in his actors, “That’s the essence of what he cares about, that real life is good enough and it doesn’t need exaggeration. It’s not Wonder Woman – it’s a woman. The reason why these performances exist is because of his respect for Julie and Patricia, of him wanting to make room for them. A lot of men do it for men, but a lot of men don’t do it for women.”

During the session, Hawke revealed his opinions about the divided political scenario in the US with regards to the pandemic: “I have just worked in Hungary. You could write an entire essay about their government but they haven’t politicised the vaccine. The US has. There are stores in America where you walk in, thinking they might be mad at you for wearing a mask. In others, they might be mad at you if you don’t. It’s the most amazing example of a divided nation.”