The Resident Evil franchise might be reaching its end with the January 27th release of Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, but that isn’t stopping director Paul W.S. Anderson from introducing audiences to some new characters. One of those new characters is Christian, played by Cuban American actor William Levy. Christian is the leader of a group of survivors that end up coming into contact with franchise star Milla Jovovich’s Alice over the course of the film.
Screen Rant spoke with Levy at the press day for The Final Chapter about what it was like joining the franchise for it’s last outing and some of the difficult stunt work he had to do.
How familiar were you with the Resident Evil franchise, or the video games?
William Levy: Very much. I saw the movies, the five movies, before. I played the game before. So I knew what it was like to be part of this—I mean, I didn’t know what it was like to be part of it, but I knew what I was getting myself into. And I gotta tell you man, it has been a great experience. I had a good time.
It seemed like a lot of fun, but it also seemed like a lot of hard work.
William Levy: It is, it is. People think it’s very fun—it is fun, but it’s very hard.
Tell me about Christian.
William Levy: He’s a new character in the franchise, of course. He’s a leader.
He’s an alpha.
William Levy: He’s a very strong character. He doesn’t trust anyone. So when Milla [Jovovich]’s character Alice comes into the picture, she starts telling them what to do, and he doesn’t like that. He’s a leader, he doesn’t like being told what to do. So he’s like…“We’ve been surviving all this time without you, who the hell are you coming over here and telling us what to do?” So he gets everything a little tense at the beginning, and then of course they have to join—they’re forced together, and have to fight all these zombies.
This franchise is known for its zombies, action, and stunts and set-pieces. Have you ever been on a film like this scale? When you walked into your shooting location, were you just overwhelmed with, “My God, this is crazy,”?
William Levy: I never had a chance to shoot something like this, man. This is amazing. The sets were so real. You know, you had hundreds of zombies every day on the set. The sets were so cool and so amazing, the guns, the outfits, everything. It made you feel so real, it made your job so much easier; you didn’t have to do so much to get into character once you get to the set.
Sure, I mean, we talked a little bit about the stunts, a lot of the training that went into that. What was the most difficult scene for you to shoot?
William Levy: I have to say a scene that we shot for three straight nights, running back and forward. It was only running, only running, only running. And you didn’t see the end of it. [laughs] You’re like, “when are we stopping, man? When are we gonna stop running?” Next night we do it again, next night we do it again, and now you’re gonna get into a lake at night. Three o’clock in the morning and you’re getting yourself into a nasty, black lake that you don’t see nothing in, and you don’t know what’s in it, either. You’re like, “oh man, what the heck am I doing here?” And then another scene that I—I was fighting with Milla, and we were fighting on this uneven surface, and I was gonna grab her leg, and I heard a “crack!” and I looked and I saw my finger, like, back here [mimes finger getting bent backwards]. And I guess it was so cold I didn’t feel the finger, so I pulled it back in place—
You had to pay the price for the art, man.
William Levy: But you know what? I had a good time. I had a good time overall, man, it was a great experience.