On Music: Pumping Up Benicio del Toro

by Armando Gallo August 15, 2018
Actor Benicio del Toro, Golden Globe recipient

armando gallo/hfpa

Puerto Rico star and Golden Globe winner Benicio Del Toro has recently spent seven months with director Ben Stiller, working on a nine-episode limited series that recounts the well-publicized escape from the high-security prison of Dannemora of two inmates helped by a female prison worker. Del Toro is famous for choosing tough and deep roles. Does music helps him to get into these heavy characters?   

“Yeah, it helped me know what I'm getting into a character.  How does it help me?  It relaxes me, it pumps me up to dare. Sometimes I might have an idea for a scene and I'm kind of like, maybe that's too much or maybe that might be silly or whatever.  Music might just get me that little thing of going like, you know, you listen to some either musically or what the singer says or the way someone is...  I don't know. I think music and sounds motivate to an extent. Also, is a way of relaxing. Not like okay, I'm going to listen to Bob Dylan for this and I'm going to listen to Santana for that or I – it just happens. I bought an album by a band named The National and it's called “Sleep Well Beast” and I had it in the car.  There was a lot of driving and I put it on like maybe three weeks ago and it was incredible what the sound did.  It just took me to that time being in the car, frustrated, happy, whatever, all those feelings just came together.  It was really something like that music does that – it took me to the time when I was driving through Upstate New York, you know, and it was summer and then suddenly I'm listening and also it was winter. Music has that power too of just, you know, taking you into your own movie and putting you in that place and smells do too, but music does that and that album just did it. And I go like, Man! that's a really good album because it was able to do that for me."