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'Lawless' Breakout Dane DeHaan Weighs In On Shia LaBeouf's Career Makeover and Tells Us Why He's So Proud of 'The Place Beyond the Pines'

Photo of Nigel M Smith By Nigel M Smith | Indiewire August 27, 2012 at 11:07AM

For a 25-year-old actor with only three years in the movie business, Dane DeHaan has had a remarkable run. Since first appearing on screen opposite Oscar-winner Chris Cooper in John Sayles' Philippine-American war epic "Amigo" in 2010, DeHaan led the critically acclaimed sci-fi sleeper hit "Chronicle"; worked with Derek Cianfrance on his anticipated follow-up to "Blue Valentine," "The Place Beyond the Pines" (it premieres next month in Toronto); acted opposite Reese Witherspoon in Atom Egoyan's next, "Devil's Knot"; and played Lucien Carr, a key member of the Beat Generation, in "Kill Your Darlings," alongside a cast that includes Daniel Radcliffe and Elizabeth Olsen. This is all in addition to his TV work which has seen him make lasting impressions on two HBO shows: "In Treatment" and "True Blood."

TWC "Lawless"

Did you bond on set with your fellow moonshiners?

Yeah, absolutely. I always try to have my relationships offset somewhat mimic my relationships on set. I guess invetibaly because of that, I probably got closet with Shia during the filming. We got to know each other pretty well, because, you know, we both come from an ideal that you have to be really doing things on camera for them to come across as truthful. We wanted to form that relationship.

With the other brothers, it was a lot of offset, a lot of hanging out in bars and bro'ing out to help inform the relationships on screen.

While out promoting "Lawless," Shia's been courting a lot of press by declaring that he's done with studio films and is in it for the indies now. Did he talk of that while on set with you?

READ MORE: Watch: Shia LaBeouf Says He's Willing to Go All the Way for Lars von Trier (VIDEO)

I think that the one thing that I learned about Shia going into this experience that I didn't know before, was that Shia is an artist and Shia is an actor. He has been really lucky to find great success and stardom within the business, but I think "Lawless" is his first real departure in which he expresses himself as an artist. Those are the kind of conversations I like to have with people, especially with people who are likeminded. We talked a lot about our goals and our aspirations.

What is your overall goal? It sounds like you have one, or several.

Well I really just want to continue to challenge myself. And I want to continue to grow as an artist. I never want to stop. Al Pacino for instance, that's a guy who never stops. He's always trying to better himself. He's in this because he's an actor. He's not in this because he wants fame. I feel incredibly lucky to do what I love and what I'm truly passionate about as an artist -- and have people like it. If I could just do that for the rest of my life, I'd be a happy person.

"I feel incredibly lucky to do what I love and what I'm truly passionate about as an artist -- and have people like it. If I could just do that for the rest of my life, I'd be a happy person."

In Derek Cianfrance's upcoming "Place Beyond the Pines," making its premiere in Toronto, you play Ryan Gosling's son. Explain…

I think people will realize when they watch the movie that it's a generational movie. It's honestly like three movies in one. I don't want to say too much about it, because I know Derek just wants it to be shown to the world in Toronto, but I am so excited for the world to see that film. I think it's beautiful and wonderful. I think it will be really well received.

Ryan's my dad, but not necessarily at the same time that you see me as his son. The movie itself really spans -- it's epic in scope like "The Godfather" -- like 20 years.

Of all your upcoming projects, which one are you most excited to share?

I don't think I've ever been more proud to be a part of something, that I am of being a part of "The Place Beyond the Pines." It was such an incredibly whole, creative process. After seeing the film, I'm so proud of the product. It's really my style, and those are the kind movies I want to make for the rest of my life.

What are you working on right now?

I just got married, so I took some time off to get married [laughs].  Then I did this supporting role for a movie called called "Devil's Knot." And right now I'm up in Toronto making a 3D movie with Metallica.

Come again?

Yeah, but I can't say anything more about that. That's all you're going to get out of me.

This article is related to: Interviews, Lawless, Dane DeHaan

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