Before John David Washington became a celebrated actor, he had a successful athletic career as a soccer player.
While Washington was not drafted after college, the son of Denzel Washington formed the training squad of the St. Louis Rams and played for the NFL European team Rhein Fire. Washington has brought the physicality and toughness that he developed on the grate into his latest film Beckett, which is now available on Netflix. In the thriller, Washington plays an American tourist who fled a tragic accident in Greece and plunged him into a political conspiracy.
“He drew from his athletic background in terms of the physical element, what you believe to be your limits and how instinct kicks in and drives something you did not expect,” director Ferdinando Cito Filomarino told ComingSoon. “All of these things are things that he absolutely brought with him and added to the character, including his athletic background. Nevertheless, for me he is the finest and absolutely meticulous interpreter. “
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Washington also did many of his own stunts for the film, which relied on Beckett being an athletic but not a trained professional.
“We had such a peculiar character for the kind of stunts they were. We want this idea that he is not a trained fighter to remain coherent, ”Filomarino explained. “So he’ll approach fights as someone who doesn’t know how to fight and kind of clumsy. But then of course he also has this survival energy, which gives him so much additional energy. That said, we also want it to keep track of what happens to a person who goes through something like this. He’s sweating, he’s in pain. We keep an eye on this pain. So all of these things made the stunt work a lot more interesting because we were keeping track of the character and what he was going through as a real human as opposed to some kind of superhuman hero who kind of put it down and kept going. To top it off, John David basically wanted to do all of his stunts himself, except for a few things that were just too dangerous for him, which would have been a legal issue. He does everything like in the film, he gets run over by a car and all that. So that made it a lot more real. We imagined this physical toll of having all these experiences. “
Beckett is now streaming on Netflix.