Emily Watson: 'Steven Spielberg is a horse whisperer'

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Steven Spielberg directs this 2011 adventure film about a young man named Albert and his horse, Joey, as their bond is forcibly broken when Joey is sold to the cavalry and sent to the trenches of World War One. Despite being too young to enlist, Albert heads to France to save his friend. Based on the children's novel of the same name by Michael Morpurgo, War Horse stars David Thewlis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jeremy Irvine, Emily Watson, Tom Hiddleston, & Peter Mullan.
January 11th, 2012

Emily Watson thinks Steven Spielberg is like a "horse whisperer" as a director.

The British actress plays a leading role in his latest directorial effort 'War Horse', and she reveals he is keen to make sure people who have parts in his films always know exactly what he wants from them.

She told BANG Showbiz: "He's like a horse whisperer. He talks to you during a take. The first few days of filming we were all a bit taken aback by it. We all come from kind of a Mike Leigh, Ken Loach approach where your performance is sacred. So in the middle of doing your scene he is talking to you."

Despite her initial resistance to the technique, Emily admits she finally came to like the way he directed as it felt like Steven was planting "seeds" in her mind which would come into fruition as she was in front of the camera.

She added: "Actually after an hour of so I started to really enjoy it. Because the film was constructed in such a beautiful, lush, old fashioned Hollywood kind of way, everything is beautifully designed, and he is planting little seeds in your head so that things sprout as you go along.

"You flower under his watering can of ideas as the camera is rolling, and I guess it takes a director of incredible skill and consonance - he doesn't have to reach for things, they just happen."