A science fiction film which has producers like Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg backing it sounds like an interesting project from the word go. To add more to that combination is the leadership of DJ Caruso, the director of I Am Number Four.
“I was looking to make a science fiction film with broad appeal. I was given the manuscript and immediately attracted to the plight of the character of Number Four,” says Caruso, whose previous work includes Eagle Eye (2008), Disturbia (2007) and Taking Lives (2004) among others. “He was this disenfranchised young man searching for his identity. His journey from a young man, into an alien warrior was compelling. He was a hero that I felt the audience could really root for.”
The film, which stars Alex Pettyfer and Dianna Agron in the roles of John and Sara respectively, will be released around the world on February 18. It will be brought to India by Reliance Big Entertainment.
Talking about working with the young cast of the film, Caruso says, “I love working with them because they are still developing their acting styles and are not stuck in certain comfort zones. As interesting, attractive and dynamic as Alex is, he has an incredible vulnerability that really works for the character.”
As for Agron, who is popularly known for her role in the TV series, Glee, it was her power packed audition that did it all. “She came in to read very late in the process of casting and she knocked me out. I thought she would be a great contrast to Alex with their different personalities and dynamics,” says the director, who enjoyed the process of taking a real-world setting and rooting in the other-world mythology for this film.
Even the actors credited Caruso for being their motivating force in the film. Says Agron, “I had a meeting with DJ during the casting, and that’s what really solidified me being able to do the film.” According to Pettyfer, “He (DJ Caruso) is the visionary of the film and has done a phenomenal job.”
Though a majority of his films released over the last eight years have been thrillers, Caruso wouldn’t categorise the genre as his favourite. “My interest firstly lies in the script. All the projects that I have worked on have excited me in different ways. It is not a conscious effort that I will only do a particular kind of genre,” says the filmmaker, who is currently developing a comic drama “with a nice twist and a cool character”.