The Lost City directors explain how they got Brad Pitt on board: “Before we knew it, he was in the jungle”

The Lost City is a comedy adventure that harkens back to the glory days of fun blockbusters like Raiders of the Lost Ark and Romancing the Stone. 

Centering on a sheltered author of romance novels (Sandra Bullock) who finds herself lost in the jungle with her hot Fabio-style book cover star (Channing Tatum) while outrunning baddies and trying to find treasure, The Lost City is directed by Aaron and Adam Nee. The brothers tell Total Film in the new issue of the magazine (opens in new tab), featuring The Northman on the cover, that – while the project was an exciting prospect – they never expected to land a certain A-lister to play the supporting role of a mysterious gung-ho adventurer.

“Brad Pitt’s name came up early for this. But the role isn’t a cameo, he’s in a good chunk of the movie. We were like, ‘We’re never going to get Brad Pitt to do this,'” chuckles Adam. “And then Sandy did Bullet Train [with Pitt], she was pitching him the role and she and Brad share a hairdresser, Janine [Thompson]. Janine was saying to Brad, ‘How would you do your hair if you played this part? What would you do about this?’ It felt like she just started getting him excited about it. And it then suddenly became real – and we were sitting on a Zoom, and talking to him about the movie. Before we knew it, he was in the jungle.”

Ah yes, the jungle. With its critters, weather, and uncooperative foliage, the Dominican Republic wilds aren’t the most comfortable filming location. “It was pretty brutal, but it brought this authenticity,” admits Adam. “At the beginning of the film, we thought we’d schedule the hardest stuff first. So our first four days, we basically held everyone hostage on a waterfall ledge, because it would take 45 minutes to do a round trip to go use a bathroom. From that, we went to the open ocean… It was like a Werner Herzog comedy. But it was an amazing way to start the film, because it bonded us all closer together, and set the tone – that this isn’t a regular studio comedy; this is an adventure film that is very funny.”

Sounds like The Lost City – in cinemas March 25 in the US, April 13 in the UK – will be exactly the sort of fun escapism we need right now. For more on the movie, be sure to check out the brand new issue of Total Film (opens in new tab), available now!

Total Film's The Northman issue

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