“Goat” is now playing!
The much-awaited new hunk filled drama Goat starring Nick Jonas, James Franco and Ben Schnetzer finally premiered this past Monday in NYC. Following the screening guests headed over to Hill & Dale for a frat party style celebration with pizza and beer.
In case you’re not familiar with the new indie movie, here’s a recap: Young 19-year-old Brad Land (Ben Schnetzer) starts college. His older brother Brett (Nick Jonas) is a pretty big deal in a fraternity on campus and lures his brother to join by promising protection, popularity and life-long friendships. Brad desperate to fit in decides to join the frat. As the pledge week continues, the hazing gets worse and leads him into violent, torturous and humiliating situations.
Some celeb guests who came to support their fellow actors included Kevin Jonas, Juno Temple, The Misshapes’ Leigh Lezark and Geordon Nichol, Barbara Palvin, Atlanta De Cadenet Taylor, Coco Mitchell, Cate Underwood, Tim Hamilton, Paul Haggis, Zoe Cassavetes, John Krokidas, Pamela Romanowsky, Erin Darke, Dan Amboyer, Nicholas Ashe, Louisa Krause, Lily Englert, Carlen Altman, Val Lauren, rapper Kirk Knight, Klaus Biesenbach, Jace Moody, Levi Bradley, Mukunda and Narayana Angulo, Voula Duval and Crystal Moselle.
We got the chance to chat it up with Nick Jonas and Ben Schnetzer about their experience working on the movie, workout routines and what they think about frats. Watch our exclusive video below:
Have you ever been bullied before?
Nick Jonas: I think that my experience with living a public life and social media being what it is, I’ve had a decent amount of bullying to a certain degree or being judged … but I also accept that that’s part of what I do, my job, it’s all part of it.
What do you think this movie says about masculinity and the way our culture treats men?
Nick Jonas: I think that this was an interesting journey to go on because I started to discover a lot about myself and specifically masculinity as a whole and what it means. I think it’s tough for men to get vulnerable and open up and show any kind of care so it comes out in violent acts at times and you know even talking sh*t as a way of showing you care. It’s something I do I guess and lots of men do, but this movie goes to an extreme level and is the unhealthy version of that.
What did you do to physically prepare for the role?
Nick Jonas: I was already training for Kingdom the T.V. show that I’m on. So it was probably just a little bit more of an arm heavy workout. It was very “bro-ey” on set.
Do you and Joe (Jonas) work out a lot?
Nick Jonas: Yeah. We work out in the same place in L.A., but we’ve kind of been on different schedules since he’s been touring and I’ve been touring. We just had a day off together yesterday in L.A. which was nice.
Frats get kind of a negative wrap. What’s your opinion of them in general?
Nick Jonas: We didn’t set out to make it a movie that’s an indictment of fraternity life and the system. I think that this is one man’s journey and it happened to be a really difficult one, but in no way is this an indictment of that culture. I think there are probably some great things about it and things that help you to grow and become a better person, but also some things that I think can make it really challenging if you leave a bunch of 20 something year old guys without any consequences.
Do you think Hollywood is one big frat?
Nick Jonas: Depends on the night and the location and how many drinks people are having.
Can you speak about working with Andrew and what you admire about him as a filmmaker?
Nick Jonas: Andrew is incredible and had so much to bring to this project and he approached it with with so much care, which was so important to the project. I was thrilled to get to work with him and our first meeting I knew he was going to really nail this and it was a great process.
Speak about what attracted you to the project.
Ben Schnetzer: The script itself was just totally compelling. It was a very tight and lean script, it felt just wound up. I read it – and I’m a slow reader – but I read it in about 45 minutes, which is rare for me, and yeah it’s a great story. I think when it comes down to anything that’s always the first question you ask yourself when you’re reading scripts and looking at projects.
Did you get to work with Brad Land to develop your character?
Ben Schnetzer: I got very intimately acquainted with his memoir. He and I met on set and I think we both liked to give each other space going into making the film, but Brad is a phenomenally supportive awesome guy, super generous. We were good friends, we still chat all the time and I feel very humbled and really honored to have a hand in telling his story. We were both kind of like, cool I’ll do my thing, you do your thing, that was the book, this is the movie. His memoir obviously was a valuable resource going into it and I hope if anything when people see this movie they go out and read his book cause his book is very very powerful.
Can you speak about collaborating with Andrew and what you enjoyed about his film making process?
Ben Schnetzer: Andrew is uncompromising, unapologetic and that’s really exciting especially you know I’ve only been doing movies for a couple of years and being able to just have a director let you off the leash was very validating and I think he captures something very raw in this film and that’s exciting. You know I don’t know if this is a film everyone is going to leave and love, I think it will polarize people, but that turns me on about art. He was very open to collaboration, which once again for a young actor is very validating when a director listens to your suggestions and takes them on board. I would work with him again in a heartbeat.
Was filming the movie as dirty and gruesome as it looks in the final production?
Ben Schnetzer: Yeah. In particularly the hazing sequences were heavily improvised and there’s not a whole lot you can do to fake that stuff you kind of just have to do it. We were fortunate enough to have a great cast and a great crew that all trusted each other, we all got comfortable with one another and we felt comfortable making ourselves vulnerable in their hands and we just went for it.
What do you think this film ultimately shines a light on?
Ben Schnetzer: I think this film begs a lot of questions about masculinity, about what masculinity means in the western world, in the 21st century and the film is not an indictment of fraternities, it’s just one man’s experience. Was it a great experience? No, but you know I think it’s an examination of brotherhood and what you do when you’re faced with really seemingly difficult threats to that.
The film is now playing!