Weeks after Paul Walker's sudden death on Saturday, he will appear in the disaster drama "Hours." The film follows a new father (Walker) as he loses his wife (Genesis Rodriguez) and is forced to care for his infant daughter during Hurricane Katrina.
Just two weeks before Walker lost his life in a tragic car crash, MTV News caught up with the actor to talk "Hours," which opens December 13. The 40-year-old, who was also in the midst of filming "Fast & Furious 7," admitted that "Hours" was one of the more challenging roles of his career.
"If you read this [script], just read it, and it doesn't move you, there's something wrong with you. You're probably a robot," he said in the interview. But it was the power of Eric Heisserer's script, he said, that was also frightening. "The only way it gets messed up is if I screw up. That's how I felt," the actor admitted.
Walker is the only character onscreen for the majority of the film — wading through rising water, cranking a hand-powered generator until his hands bleed and sprinting back and forth down abandoned hospital corridors throughout the 97-minute journey. The pressure of being alone onscreen and of opening himself up to being vulnerable every day was, as he said, "welcome pressure."
"Once I got in and I started doing it, I learned a lot about myself," he said, adding that the New Orleans-based crew developed a real bond during filming. "The thing that was cool is that all the guys that were there, they were in it for the same reason. They were all touched. Most of them are local boys, [which] made it easy because it felt like a family environment."
He described that family as "super solid people," particularly his onscreen wife, Rodriquez. "I love the hell out of her," he said.
"Hours" is the first of three Walker films to be potentially released posthumously. The 40-year-old had completed filming on the crime drama "Brick Mansions," about an undercover cop attempting to bring down a drug lord, and was in the midst of filming the seventh installment of Universal's "Fast & Furious" franchise. The studio has not yet announced how it intends to handle the unfinished film.
On the day of Walker's death, "Hours" director Heisserer tweeted: "I am beyond devastated. What a generous and kind soul. My heart goes out to his daughter. You will be missed, Paul. Every day."
In the same interview with MTV News, Walker also discussed "Fast & Furious 7," saying that he was "definitely optimistic" about director James Wan's vision.
"I was like, 'I hope you know what you're getting into, because it means far too much to too many people,' " Walker told us of his early discussions with the director, adding: "He gets in, we're probably two weeks in, he goes, 'You know, I told you I knew what you meant but I didn't really know what you meant.'"
"We didn't have enough prep time — things were just kind of running and gunning just right out of the gate, which is the way we've done them in the past too," he said. "It's an awful lot, what he's taken on."
Following Walker's November 30 accident, Wan tweeted: "I am so beyond heartbroken right now. I can't process anything."