Three-time Academy Award winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis announced this week that principle photography for the highly anticipated new Police Academy movie, “Police Academy 8: Homeland Insecurity”, wrapped up this week in the town of Coma.
The project was a labor of love for Day-Lewis, who has pursued the project for years.
“I really wanted to get back to doing comedy,” Day-Lewis said. “I haven’t done a true comedy since “My Left Foot.” That was more than 20 years ago.”
The latest film in the popular franchise will feature Day-Lewis as the clumsy and daft police sergeant, Harry “Flatch” Doubleday. Day-Lewis said the character’s nickname is derived from the fact the character has “extensive flatulence” throughout the movie.
“I think that was partly what drew me to this character,” Day-Lewis said. “Initially the producers said they would use sound effects for the flatulence because they wanted it to be over-the-top. But I told them no. I told them that I wanted to produce the flatulence organically. An audience can tell when you’re being honest with them on screen. They hear a flatulence sound effect, you’ve lost them. I want them to be immersed in the story. That flatulence has to come from deep within me.”
Day-Lewis put himself on a high-fiber diet and did extensive research with several doctors and scientists in an effort to boost his ability to deliver “the goods” on camera.
“My family is certainly relieved that I’m done with this film,” Day-Lewis said. “That’s for goddamned sure. I haven’t seen our cat in months. I think he ‘bugged out’,” Day-Lewis added with a smile.
The story centers on a wacky and often irreverent group of police recruits who are called into action to stop a terrorist threat when the rest of the city’s police force is kidnapped.
“I read the script and I felt like I was reading a newspaper,” Day-Lewis said. “Everything about it felt real, and that’s what makes great comedy. I mean, imagine every law enforcement person in an entire city being kidnapped? Who would protect us? How would that feel? It would be scary. Who would take their place? Recruits. That’s who. That’s exactly how it would happen in real life and that’s exactly what happens in this movie. And that is a great foundation for creating humor.”
Day-Lewis said that while this film may seem like a departure from some of his other roles, he remains immensely proud of his work on the new movie and believes the risks he took in making the character come to life will pay off for movie goers.
“There is one scene in particular that I am proud of,” Day-Lewis explained. “My character gets trapped in a port-a-potty. A car crashes into the port-a-potty sending it tumbling down the street. End over end several times. My character is stuck inside. Eventually the port-a-potty comes to a stop and Flatch opens the door as says ‘Has someone been eating tacos?’ Of course he is covered in human waste. I decided that I wanted to use real human waste. The producers were against it at first but I convinced them it was the right thing to do artistically. So the crew had at the port-a-potty for several days until it was maxed out. We do the scene and I’m swimming in this stuff. But this much I know; when the audience watches that scene and Flatch asks if someone has been eating tacos, the audience is going to believe that Flatch must have smelled or tasted something in that port-a-potty that made him believe someone had recently eaten tacos. This whole thing is a process. I’d also add, on a personal note, that I really do enjoy tacos. So even that is authentic.”
“Police Academy 8: Homeland Insecurity” will debut in theaters next spring.