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Radcliffe mania

Daniel Radcliffe, writer Jane Goldman and director James Watkins were at London’s Apple Store to chat about The Woman In Black.

Screen (and a gaggle of screaming girls) popped down to London’s Apple Store last week for a Q&A with Daniel Radcliffe, writer Jane Goldman and director James Watkins, to coincide with the UK release of The Woman In Black.

Writer Jane Goldman revealed that she was drawn to adapting Susan Hill’s chilling tale of a young widowed solicitor [Arthur Kipps] who is forced to leave his three-year-old son while he attends to the affairs of the recently deceased owner of the creepy Eel Marsh House, because “it’s the perfect classic ghost story. It has all the ingredients and I love that it has a real emotional heart to it as well as being absolutely terrifying.”

And it was Goldman’s script which really sold the project - his first film since Harry Potter - to Radcliffe. “I read it and I hadn’t read anything like it … it was wonderful,” says the young British actor, who met with director James Wakins a few days after reading the script.

One thing the pair agreed on was that the film absolutely could not be in 3D.  “That was the first thing we talked about. And we established that our vision of the film was the same – not just a horror film but something that has real heart and real characters,” said Radcliffe.

“You’ve got to try to create a character the people believe in and want to go on a journey with,” added Watkins. “There are a lot of current slasher gory horror films where the character just has to be killed. So we thought if we take our time, slow down and advanced the character, that was going to help because people are going to rooting for him.”

When it came to researching his role, Radcliffe revealed that he spoke to friends about their experiences with depression and to a grievance counselor to try and understand how Arthur had been affected by the loss of his wife. “It was about getting into Arthur’s head and getting an idea of what his relationship would be like with his son, given his wife died during childbirth. One of the things they said that really struck me was how exhausting, physically exhausting it [depression] is. And so, that was kind of how I started with Arthur, from the first moment you see me.”

With The Woman in Black now storming the UK box office, Goldman revealed that she is currently working on a script for Tim Burton, while Radcliffe will next be seen as the 19 year old Allen Ginsberg in Kill Your Darlings alongside Elizabeth Olsen. The film tells the true story of how a murder at Columbia University in 1944 brought together the young writers who would spark the Beat Revolution.

 “It’s an amazing story, which not a lot of people know. We start filming in March,” said Radcliffe.

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