We caught up with stars Christy Meyer, David Menkin and Megan Maczko at the “A Hologram for the King” Tribeca Film Festival premiere.
Read what they had to say below:
Speak about working with Tom the director?
Christy: He’s probably one of the most creative and talented people I’ve met. He wrote the entire music before he filmed. He has this vision before it’s even shot which is incredible, of what it’s going to sound like. He’s incredibly sensitive on set as far as being sensitive in a good way to very subtle direction, very collaborative. If he loves what you do, he’s like, “Great.” Then he’ll be like, “Let’s do it two more ways so I have something to choose from.” He was wonderful.
Speak about working with Tom Hanks.
Christy: Tom Hanks is one of the most generous and kind people that I’ve ever met. While you expect you’re going to be acting next to this megastar, it ends up being just a very down to earth person, who is interested in everybody and everything. I think that’s what actually makes him a superstar.
What did you love about this story?
Christy: I’m based in the UK and I travel a bit around there. I’m kind of a fish out of water as well. I’m an American abroad. That absolutely appealed to me. The idea of an American being changed in another culture and all the preconceived notions you have of other cultures just kind of crumbling down.
Where did you film?
Christy: We filmed in Morocco and Berlin.
How was the experience being in Morocco?
Christy: It was amazing. It was like being in a really nice camp in a way. We weren’t in a camp, we were in a hotel but just the fact that there was absolutely nothing to do other than your project and nothing around you but sand. It just became a very inclusive collaborative thing.
Tell us about your character.
David: I play Brad. I am one of three people to travel with Tom Hank’s character, Allen, to the desert, so we are an American group and we’re expecting to have the red carpet rolled out like we have here and that the Saudi Arabians are just going to give us whatever we want. Then we come and they sort of go, “Sorry, no.” We don’t even get internet and it is a very humbling experience for all of us and I think that my character turns more and more into a child as the film goes on because he just doesn’t get his way at all.
Speak about collaborating with Tom Hanks.
David: Collaborating with Tom is probably the highlight of my career and I think that anyone in my position would probably say exactly the same thing. He is so inclusive. He makes sure that you are always taken care of and that you are just as important as he is in the room. Who else would do that except Tom Hanks?
What was the highlight of this experience?
David: I think working with the people that I’ve worked with. I’ve made lifelong friends. I got to see parts of the world that it would be very, very difficult to experience on your own, and I got to experience Arab culture, which is beautiful and I would highly recommend it to anyone.
Tell me a little bit about the role you play.
Megan: As you probably know Tom Hanks plays a sort of down on his luck businessman who goes over to Saudi Arabia to sell the King hologram video conferencing technology. My character works alongside him to sell that technology. I’m an IT gal.
How is working with Tom, the director?
Megan: Fantastic. He has exactly what he wants in his head and yet he allows a lot of room and time to sort of play around and yet has the ability to make you feel like the ideas that are his ideas are actually your ideas. You take ownership over them and feel very empowered through the process.
What did you love about this story?
Megan: I just loved how nuanced it was about a kind of Westerner going over to the Middle East and all of these surprising things happen and he gets immersed into the culture rather than the culture having a kind of distancing effect and solidifying his Americanism. I think there’s nobody else who could have played Tom’s role because we so easily get drawn into him and then thereby drawn into that environment and then into the story. It’s just a true honor.