You know him already as the Man of Steel. Now Henry Cavill is The Man From U.N.C.L.E.
Cavill is taking the lead role as smooth-talking CIA agent Napoleon Solo in Guy Ritchie’s reboot of the classic 60s television show. Opposite him is Armie Hammer playing Solo’s Cold War enemy-turned-ally Illya Kuryakin.
The duo are forced to team up when a mysterious international terrorist organization threatens to deploy nuclear weapons. The result is a roller coaster ride of explosions, car chases, vintage fashion, beautiful women, breathtaking locations, and witty one-liners. In other words, The Man From U.N.C.L.E. promises to be everything you love about action comedy spy flicks.
In preparation for the big debut, we chatted with Cavill and Hammer, plus leading ladies Alicia Vikander and Elizabeth Debicki. We also took a look behind the curtain with production designer Oliver Scholl and costume designer Joanna Johnston. Here’s what The Man From U.N.C.L.E. has in store.
D’M: This is such a stylish film. Do you consider yourselves to be stylish?
Henry Cavill: I don’t know if anyone can consider themselves stylish.
Armie Hammer: If you consider yourself stylish, doesn’t that make you unstylish? I don’t even choose my clothes most of the time. There’s a whole system involved. I’m merely a puppet.
D’M: What’s it like to play a couple of damn cool spies?
Henry Cavill: It’s a lot of fun! I hadn’t played a character like this before.
Armie Hammer: I think you said it yourself – it was pretty damn cool. We got to drive amazing vehicles. We got to go to amazing locations. We got to work with amazing people. And we had a damn fun time while doing it.
D’M: What goes through your head when you find out you’ve landed this kind of role?
Elizabeth Debicki: If I recall correctly, I was doing a play at Sydney Theatre and was on my way to work when I found out I got the part. It’s bewildering. I had never been to Italy and all I could think about was that I would be shooting a Guy Ritiche film there. I play a really fabulous role. I love Guy as a director. It was really a pleasure to make it.
D’M: What’s it like to be the leading lady in a Guy Ritchie film?
Alicia Vikander: I’m a big fan of his work. What I think is extraordinary about this film is that my character and Elizabeth’s villain are both great female parts that aren’t girly stereotypes. They’re quite badass. They push the story forward and have a lot of integrity. Gaby is a cool girl and I had a lot of fun playing her.
D’M: What cues did you take from the era in putting the men’s costumes together?
Joanna Johnston: Elegance, style, old-fashioned sophistication. I went for late 60s: 66, 67. I’m obsessed with those couple of years. I had all of Henry’s suits made in London by Timothy Everest. He loves the period, so it was a great collaboration. For accessories we used Thierry Lasry and Persol. I copied the folding ones from Steve McQueen for Armie. He really liked that.
D’M: As production designer, which set was the most fun?
Oliver Scholl: The most fun was the castle. The castle was split between three different locations in Italy: Castle Baia, Castle Nuovo, and a dock we found just around the corner from Castle Baia. By editing and adding visual effects, we got all three to come together and create an environment that – hopefully! – is convincing.