Eddie Redmayne co-stars with Felicity Jones in new Amazon Prime Video movie “The Aeronauts”, telling the story of a scientist and a daredevil pilot in the late 1800s who fly a hot air balloon higher than anyone in history.
Redmayne dropped by Wednesday’s edition of “The Late Show” to promote the new flick, and revealed that he barely survived the first day of filming.
As Redmayne explained to host Stephen Colbert, he and Jones were flying in an actual hot-air balloon, with a pilot concealed out of sight of the cameras.
After all the shots required had been achieved, the pilot began lowering the balloon, which Redmayne explained is a very imprecise process — so imprecise that the balloon began heading straight for a cluster of trees. The panicked pilot told them to get rid of the ballast, leading he and Jones to frantically start hurling sandbags out of the balloon’s basket, which lifted the balloon just enough that they narrowly avoided crashing into the trees.
While Redmayne and Jones high-fived and celebrated their near-miss, they caught a glimpse of the pilot. “Every ounce of blood had gone from his face, and he was just looking totally terrified,” Redmayne said.
When Redmayne asked what the problem was, he replied, “You’ve thrown out all the sandbags.” Replied the actor: “You told us to throw all the f**king sandbags out.”
Actually, Redmayne revealed, the pilot had meant for them to get rid of some of the sandbags, not all of them.
“What that meant was that when we were next trying to land, which we did moments later, and we were hurtling towards another forest, which we did, we had no way of avoiding it, basically,” he explained.
“At that moment we crunched into the trees, came hurtling to the ground, smashed down on the ground and Felicity’s head smacked back against this campaign chest and there was just silence,” he added. “And this was our first day of filming.”