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Sam Rockwell And Henry Cavill Reveal How Argylle Subverts Spy Thrillers

Sam, I wanted to start with you. How did both playing a spy and also subverting the idea of a spy perhaps make this more intriguing to you than a conventional action thriller?

Sam Rockwell: He uses me as a device to the unorthodox, the realistic spy, so to speak. It’s kind of like Albert Brooks and William Hurt in “Broadcast News,” and so that juxtaposition between me and Henry is really helpful.

Henry, you’re playing the heightened, idealized version of Bond and all those types of literary spies, but what’s the trick for maybe trying to humanize him a bit, to the extent that you can?

Henry Cavill: Well, do you really want to humanize Argylle too much? The idea is that he is an idealized, as you say, heightened version of a spy, or the trope’s turned up to 11. I did try to provide some softer elements because it’s not the only role he serves. He also serves as a…

Rockwell: Sage.

Cavill: A crutch, a crutch for another character. I don’t want to give away too much, but [it’s] also a hindrance, I suppose, that that person is discovering themselves at the same time. It’s an interesting turn, actually. I think Matthew’s executed pretty well on that — Matthew and Jason [Fuchs, screenwriter].

How much of the action did each of you get to do on the set, and how far did you each push it before they said “okay”?

Rockwell: They wanted us to do as much as we could. They tested us out and drove us around a little bit.

Cavill: There’s a couple of little things which we didn’t do. There’s a wall moment which they were like, “No, we don’t want you doing that in case you end up with a splinter in your eye or something.” But otherwise, we’re doing all the fighting. It’s all there.

Rockwell: We’re doing the kung fu fighting, for sure.

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