Kill Your Darlings has been a film on the tip of everyone’s tongue for a while now. From first-time director and writer, John Krokidas his debut work portrays the young lives of Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and William s. Burroughs in 1944 as the poets-to-be find themselves drawn together by a murder. Jack Huston takes on the role of Kerouac with Ben Foster as Burroughs and Dane DeHaan as the one who gets Ginsberg involved in the case.
And in a role that’s proved to be as challenging as its been rewarding, Daniel Radcliffe plays Ginsberg in the film that’s garnering a lot of attention and buzz for the way it deals with the sexuality of its characters and a noteable kiss between Radcliffe and DeHaan, as well as a sex scene that Radcliffe shares with another man at a different point in the film. Critics have been talking about how well Radcliffe is able to embody his character, allowing that Harry Potter shell around him to vaporize. But if you got the chance to see him in Equus, you were able to really grasp the kind of physical and committed actor he has always been—in or out of Hogwarts. Vulture recently caught up with Radcliffe at Sundance for a great interview about the importance of the film and taking a new kind of direction.
On his kiss with Dane DeHaan:
You know, I think that will be wonderful! Dane and I are banging the drum already because we want the MTV Best Kiss award. We want that golden popcorn! To my knowledge, a sincere, passionate, romantic gay kiss has never won, so I think that would be a very cool thing for this movie to receive.
On the sexuality of his character:
[John] said, “I had to get angry, and the thing I got angry about was that in 1944, you could literally get away with murder if you portrayed your attacker as homosexual.” It’s just another one of the things the gay community has had to fight against over the years, and in that way, it’s given me insight. It’s interesting because there is part of this film about these young men discovering their sexuality, and I think this would be a really cool film for a gay youth to see. Although it’s important to these characters, it’s not the end-all, be-all to their identity. There’s a tendency to think that once you come out as gay that’s how all your friends will think about you — that the first thing they’ll think about is that you’re gay, where actually that’s not the first thing I think about these guys like Allen Ginsberg. They were a lot more than just their sexualities.
On the direction from John:
My favorite John Krokidas direction moment was when we started kissing. I guess I was way too hesitant about it in the moment, and John just went, “No! Kiss him! Fucking sex kissing!” That was my favorite direction moment, probably in my career. [Laughs.] Especially with the world that I’ve come from! The things that directors have shouted to me in the past usually involve which way I have to look to see the dragon.
Check out the rest of the interview here.