Toronto 2012: 'Seven Psychopaths' Star Colin Farrell on the Differences in Acting for Theater, Film (Video)

5:05 PM PST 09/10/2012 by THR Staff

Director Martin McDonagh also reveals to THR the challenges in moving from one medium to the other.

Even accomplished playwrights struggle with writing a film script sometimes.

So says playwright-filmmaker Martin McDonagh, who wrote and directed the crime comedy Seven Psychopaths, which stars Colin Farrell as a struggling screenwriter who inadvertently becomes entangled in the Los Angeles criminal underworld after his oddball friends (Sam Rockwell) and (Christopher Walken) kidnap a gangster’s (Woody Harrelson) beloved Shih Tzu.

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"It just took an awful lot longer to get my head around writing a script because it can go to so many different places in the course of a page whereas a play, eight pages, 10 pages of scenes is really just a course of conversations," McDonagh told The Hollywood Reporter in the THR TIFF Video Lounge at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Farrell -- who reunited with McDonagh, his In Bruges director, for Psychopaths -- adds that that there's also a big difference between acting in the theater and in film.

"I think film is a director's medium ... and theater is both a writer's and an actor's medium that's heavily influenced by a director's touch," he says. "But in film, you ideally trust your director and can give your director a lot of ... options. [In the theater] you can control your performance from start to end, you get to go on an arc ... and you get to reinvent each afternoon."

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As for how McDonagh's movies differ from other filmmakers, "his movies are more dialogue-driven," says Rockwell.

Seven Psychopaths hits theaters Oct. 12 via CBS Films.

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