Casey Affleck on ‘Our Friend’ and How Directing Has Changed Him as an Actor


Plus, he shares a fun story from the making of ‘The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.’

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With director Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s Our Friend now playing in select theaters and On Demand thanks to Gravitas Ventures and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment, I recently got to speak with Casey Affleck about being part of such an inspiring movie. If you haven’t seen the trailer, Our Friend is based on the Esquire article “The Friend: Love Is Not a Big Enough Word” by Matthew Teague and is about a family (Dakota Johnson and Affleck) dealing with terminal cancer and the close friend (Jason Segel) that moves in to help them out. I recently watched the film and thought it was incredibly well done and featured terrific performances from everyone in the cast. In addition, as someone that has lost a number of close friends the past few years, the film was a beautiful reminder about the intricacies of friendship and the importance of making each day count. Our Friend also stars Jake Owen, Gwendoline Christie, Cherry Jones, Isabella Kai, and Violet McGraw.

During the interview, Affleck talks about what it was like filming in the real town where the story took place with the actual family members watching, what it was like on set when filming the cancer scenes, why Dakota Johnson had to do a lot of the heavy lifting in the film, how the film weaves in a lot of levity even though it’s dealing with serious subject matter, how directing has changed the way he is on set, and more. In addition, for fans of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, he shares a story from the making of that film.

Check out what he say to say below and further down is exactly what we talked about and the official synopsis.

Casey Affleck:

  • What was his reaction hearing about the story for the first time?
  • How the film weaves in a lot of levity even though it’s dealing with serious subject matter.
  • Why Dakota Johnson had to do a lot of the heavy lifting in the film.
  • What was it like on set filming the stuff in the 3rd act?
  • What was it like filming in the real town where the story took place with the real family members watching?
  • How has directing possibly changed the way he is on set?
  • Shares a story from making The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.

Here’s the official synopsis:

Our Friend tells the inspiring and extraordinary true story of the Teague family—journalist Matt (Casey Affleck), his vibrant wife Nicole (Dakota Johnson) and their two young daughters—and how their lives are upended by Nicole’s heartbreaking diagnosis of terminal cancer. As Matt’s responsibilities as caretaker and parent become increasingly overwhelming, the couple’s best friend Dane Faucheux (Jason Segel) offers to come and help out. As Dane puts his life on hold to stay with his friends, the impact of this life altering decision proves greater and more profound than anyone could have imagined.

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Image via Gravitas Ventures

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