Shia LaBeouf talked a big game last year with his method acting, and in 2013 we’re getting to see the fruits of his labor, with his role in The Necessary Death Of Charlie Countryman among one of the many talking points of this year’s Sundance Film Festival.
The opening scene has set mouths running, featuring as it does a battered and bruised LaBeouf dangling by one foot over a dam, and in true form it turns out that the bruises were real, and that LaBeouf himself was indeed the man held precariously over the water. The scene was shot in Bucharest, Romania and LaBeouf allowed himself to be roughed up before following his stunt advisor’s advice so that he could film the scene himself. "The guy says to me, 'Listen, the danger isn't really falling into the water” he told USA Today. “You might hurt yourself, but you'll survive that. But if you swing into (a neon light in the scene), there's no way you're going to survive that. So don't swing too much.' "
LaBeouf went on to say that it was a step away from working with the stunt team in Transformers, with the language barrier being an additional hurdle. "You have to look them in the eye and trust them completely, like you would on aTransformers set," he said. "But it's a very different group with communication issues. Not everyone even speaks English." This was just one scene of a film that sees the actor take a heck of a lot of beatings – all real – including one where he gets his head slammed into a stone wall. Did they get a stunt double for that one? Of course they didn’t.