Lee Pace likes playing morally corrupt geniuses. He did it for four seasons on AMC’s tech-centric Halt and Catch Fire, and he’s filling those shoes once again in Nick Hamm’s Driven, a high-octane drama starring Jason Sudeikis as an FBI informant and Pace as infamous automaker John DeLorean. The story DeLorean’s downfall – he was involved in a $20 million cocaine deal set up by the feds in the early ’80s around the time his motor company was nearing bankruptcy – is almost too wild to be true, as is the story how the film got made.
Uproxx chatted with Pace about weathering Hurricane Maria while filming, his return to the MCU, a Pushing Daisies revival, and why he’s determined to sport a fake chin on screen just once.
You guys were filming this movie in Puerto Rico when Hurricane Maria hit. What was that experience like, coming back and trying to get this thing done?
Yeah, that really changed the tone. Suddenly the real challenge making that movie was not playing this character that was very different from myself, but just getting to set every day because Hurricane Maria just caused so much destruction. When we evacuated the island and came back home, I was convinced that we weren’t going to make it back. I just thought there was no way possible but] Nick Hamm, our director, has a relentless John DeLorean sense magical thinking in him. There was no way we were going to not finish this film.
I do think a big part the reason why John DeLorean fought so hard to keep that car in production was that he felt responsible for all the workers in Belfast who were manufacturing that car and he knew that they depended on those jobs. So, he was trying to keep that project going as long as he possibly could. He would not say die. I admire a point view like that. I do. It’s a little insane, but it’s pretty incredible. I look at the movie Nick has made, and I really do see that spirit inside the movie.