The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Aaron Eckhart recreates Frankenstein's monster as lean, mean fighting machine

  • Print

TORONTO - The lumbering, sewn-together corpse known as Frankenstein's monster has been totally recreated for Aaron Eckhart's latest film, the fantasy-action thriller, "I, Frankenstein."

And if purists balk at the super-hero twists worked into the modern-day creature — who is more square-jawed than square-headed and surprisingly agile as he battles supernatural demons with martial arts flips and blows — the "Thank You For Smoking" star isn't interested.

"I don't care," Eckhart says in a recent stop in Toronto. "This is Hollywood."

Such flights into fancy are what movie-making is all about, he says, noting the new take also involves a world secretly populated by centuries-old warrior gargoyles and power-hungry demons.

"It's a reimagining, it's a reintroduction of the monster of Frankenstein into modern times and into a whole new universe," says Eckhart, who read Mary Shelley's classic novel "Frankenstein" as a kid.

"We decided to make it a little more active, a little more violent, dynamic, a lean, mean fighting machine, and give him some new challenges."

Boris Karloff, step aside. You too, Fred Gwynne.

Eckhart's unnatural monster is chiselled and buff, and he's 200 years old.

Inspired by the graphic novel "I, Frankenstein," the story here picks up with the death of the creature's creator, Victor Frankenstein, and zooms ahead to modern-day times to find the man-made monster still alive and reluctantly drawn into a battle between heaven-sent gargoyles and evil demons from below.

Eckhart says he spent six months beefing up his physique and learning Kali stick fighting to convincingly carry out the numerous battle scenes.

But amid all that fighting, Frankenstein's monster continues to face even greater demons internally, he notes.

"The core is there from Mary Shelley — he's rejected by his father, he's unwanted, unloved," says Eckhart, also known for playing Harvey Dent/Two Face, in "The Dark Knight."

"He's created technologically, you could say, that's very much there, which is sort of giving him new issues and he's still looking for love, he's looking for his purpose in life, he doesn't know how to trust kindness so that's there. But we've just given him a different environment."

The heavy fantasy elements meant a lot of green-screen work for the 45-year-old actor, which Eckhart says isn't as difficult as it's sometimes made out to be.

"As an actor, that's your job. In the theatre you have to create the fourth wall, you know, you have to create what's out in the audience and all that sort of stuff so it really should be nothing new to actors."

Performing since age 13, Eckhart says he's learned to embrace every genre out there in order to build a diverse, life-long career.

That includes the weepy romance "Love Happens," the high-octane blow-em-up "Battle Los Angeles," his indie breakout "In the Company of Men" and the dense relationship drama "Rabbit Hole."

"I made the decision early on to, at the end of my career, to look back at my career and say: 'I made a lot of films. Some are good, some were bad but I had a lot of experiences, I challenged myself in different ways,'" says Eckhart, who adds that he hopes to one day direct and produce.

"If you're too precious in life you exclude yourself from certain experiences and you don't know (what will happen).

"Moviemaking is such a crapshoot anyway. You could be working with (the) best director, best cinematographer and still, the movie sucks. So it's better just to get out there and try new things and see what works."

"I, Frankenstein" opens Friday.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Family of Matias De Antonio speaks outside Law Courts

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • MIKE APORIUS/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS STANDUP - pretty sunflower in field off HWY 206 near Bird's Hill Park Thursday August 09/2007
  • Marc Gallant / Winnipeg Free Press.  Local/Standup- Morning Fog. Horse prances in field by McPhillips Road, north of Winnipeg. 060605.

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What are you most looking forward to this Easter weekend?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google