Fallen Sun’s Red Bunker scene brought production to a halt
The award-winning Luther series has entered a new phase with the Netflix film Luther: The Fallen Sunwhere Idris Elba’s character faces a new dark despicable criminal played by Andy Serkis.
Directed by Jamie Payne and written by series writer/creator Neil Cross, the film begins with John Luther (Elba) in prison, but he is taunted by a psychopathic serial killer, David Robey (Serkis), who is terrorizing London.
In typical Luther fashion, he breaks out of prison to find Robey, whose crimes essentially consist of digitally stalking his victims, finding their deepest secrets, and blackmailing them into doing his bidding or killing themselves.
“What was interesting to me about the character is that he’s not a notable person per se,” said Serkis (who will be at Toronto Comicon on March 18). Yahoo Canada. “He’s a very lonely, isolated person who has become desensitized.”
“He connects with people by being a voyeur, by looking into their lives, watching them do the most mundane, boring, normal things, to kind of wish he could be like them.”
Serkis also emphasized that developing a character who has created his own kind of “moral world” is particularly appealing.
“In the moral world he created [he] believes that someone like John Luther is a hypocrite who is in the position of authority of a police officer and yet is just running a kind of vigilante on his own terms,” Serkis said. “It’s like, how can these people get away with this and I still get convicted?”
“He’s trying to create a safe space where other people who feel misjudged or judged in a certain way can come together and come together.”
The Luther: The Fallen Sun scene that paused production
The film peaks in suspense at the end of the story (which we don’t want to spoil you in full), but Luther ends up in Robey’s Red Bunker with DCI Odette Raine (Cynthia Erivo).
As Serkis describes, this scene is the “pivot” of the film, sort of a “safe haven” for people on the dark web to see unspeakable deeds unfold.
“It’s an extraordinary scene that Neil Cross wrote and it took a long time to get the precise tone for it,” said Serkis.
As the actor recalled, the complexity led them to take a break from filming to really establish how this pivotal moment would be executed.
“Interestingly, we didn’t shoot that scene for a day because it was so complicated and so emotionally complex that we really had to figure out what the beats of that scene were going to be,” explained Serkis. “So that’s when Jamie Payne, our director, Idris and I, and Cynthia Erivo got together and really had to talk about exactly what we were trying to say.”
As Payne explained, there were “constant conversations” with Elba and Cross, but the last type of torture in that sequence was something they didn’t talk about for a while. The manner in which Luther is being held and tortured led to the break in filming.
“We showed up to rehearse it and then I have to say Idris Elba had another idea and what you see in the film that’s ten times more uncomfortable for Idris Elba was the idea that we paused,” said Payne. We stopped and thought let’s do this, which of course made it five times harder for Idris, which says something about Idris, his commitment to Luther.”
“I think we all thought that … we have this opportunity to play with a character. So it was literally overnight, Neil and I got together to act on Idris’ idea and we played with a whole bunch of things that influenced the character’s story, more than just Idris being tortured at that point. “
“We only want to do it if we can do it right”
The Luther The series, which ran for five seasons, was incredibly loved and featured some of the best character development a TV show could offer. When it came to continuing that story into a feature film, Cross knew it had to be done right.
“Only we [wanted] Doing it when we could do it right, and doing it right, meant respecting and repaying the loyalty of the people who have been with us for over 13 years,” Cross said. “So it’s about respecting her and the character, but in a way that makes the world bigger and new and also opens up to a whole new audience.”
“How do you invite people in without being rude to your existing fans and without being exclusive or somehow cabal to the people who come to you? So that was the hardest part of it in terms of the way we put the story together.”
What’s interesting about that Luther: The Fallen Sun is that you could probably watch this movie without having seen the show and not be totally lost. But for Payne, who directed the film after working on several episodes of the film Luther In the series, it is the film’s connection to Luther’s “drive” that is particularly convincing.
“It could have been a two-hour story centered on Luther’s brilliance in his process, how he works things out and the assumptions he makes, but it ended up being a two-hour story tied to his drive,” Payne said . “He’s a fugitive, he must catch his man while he’s on the run.”
“I love the whole idea of being a fan first to be with Luther for two straight hours while he’s on the run and racing against time. I’m lucky enough to be able to direct. I think what I loved about it was that the audience could stand next to John and breathe with John and gasp with John as he became exhausted and pushed beyond his natural ability to catch his guy. That’s what excited me the most about the feature.”
As the author Cross points out, every new idea must meet a simple criterion.
“If we’re like, ‘Oh my God, I want to see this,’ then we do it,” he said.