Peter Sarsgaard and Paul Dano Join Eco-Terrorist Film 'Night Moves'
Though this news came out of the woodwork last week, the most recent casting is what got our attention as The Playlist has learned Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood) and Peter Sarsgaard (Green Lantern) will star in Night Moves, a new film from indie filmmaker Kelly Reichardt (Meek's Cutoff, Wendy and Lucy). The film marks some new territory for the director as the story follows three environmentalists who take their passion for everything green to the next level when they decide to become eco-terrorists and blow up a dam. Dano and Sarsgaard play two of the plotters and Rooney Mara is considering the third role.
Mara's scheduling might keep her from doing the film, but Dano just finished working with Reichardt on Meek's Cutoff, so they must have gotten along quite well as collaborators. As for Sarsgaard (who worked with Dano on Knight & Day), he's already digging into the role by putting himself in the frame of mind of an environmentalist pushed to such radical actions. Sarsgaard talked about understanding the motivation of his character:
“I saw a documentary called ‘If A Tree Falls’ in which a group of environmentalists in Portland [are] trying to save centuries-old trees and the police act with such brutality that these youths ultimately decide to do more than protect a tree. So [they] take action. Thus, step by step, I can understand how my character gets to the point of wanting to blow up a dam. I never want to do this, but I can understand how someone can want to do that. We have a gun pointed to our planet. We see that the demonstrations are not working because they are being tackled with pepper [spray]…so you get the radical movement. I can understand that.”
And while the film might sound like it will contain a preachy message about saving the environment, Sarsgaard also said, "I do not think people have to make films for that reason, because people do not like to feel that you are wanting to teach something. The story is the most important.” In this case, it's about watching characters who find themselves so passionate about the Earth, that they're willing to go to radical lengths to get their message across, but it's not necessarily pushing that message upon its audience. Sounds like a solid story with a good cast coming together, so stay tuned as more details become available.