Michael Douglas & Jeremy Irvine Interview – The Reach

Michael Douglas and Jeremy Irvine team up together to play a game of cat and mouse in Jean-Baptiste Léonetti‘s Western thriller The Reach.

The Stephen Susco-scripted film, which is based on the 1972 novel Deathwatch by Robb White, stars the 24-year-old breakout star of Steven Spielberg‘s 2011 epic “War Horse” (Irvine) as Ben, a young tracker who, after bidding farewell to his college-bound girlfriend (Hanna Mangan Lawrence), accompanies the corrupt and powerful Los Angeles businessman Madec (played by two-time Oscar winner Douglas) in a hunting trip across the Mojave desert.

After Madec accidentally kills an elderly man, he tries to bribe the young Ben into helping him cover up the evidence. But when his only witness refuses to assist him in covering up his crime, Madec turns the tables and targets Ben as his next victim, leaving him to survive on his own without any resources in the vast and inhospitable stretch of the desert known as The Reach.

At the Toronto International Film Festival earlier this month, where the film had its world premiere at the Princess of Wales Theatre, I spoke with Douglas, Irvine and Léonetti during a rountable interview. The trio talked about adapting White’s novel for a modern, young adult audience.

For Douglas in particular, the film was a passion project since he also took on the role of producer via his production company Further Films. “I thought this would be a fun movie to do as a producer,” he said, “but I also wanted for a younger audience — here’s an opportunity for me to maybe be involved with this co-star, this lead role, this young man that might attract the same the way the books did, a young adult audience.”

Check out the highlights from interview below, where they speak more about the appeal of the film, its physical demands and more.

Lionsgate/Roadside acquired the U.S. rights to The Reach. A release date, however, has yet to be announced.