I got to sit and talk to some of the cast members before the film to get a little insight before seeing their panel in Hall H. Bella Heathcote who plays Jane Bennet talked about how she and the other "Bennet Sisters" trained a good deal of kung fu and weapons training and while being an "very anxious person" so she channeled all her energy into her training. While Douglas Booth playing Mr. Bingley admitted while he doesn't fight as much as the Bennet Sisters he still had to fight to survive. Though it sounded like one of the female characters had to step in and save him at some point!
Sam Riley, who plays Pride and Prejudice and Zombies' Mr. Darcy, said he really wanted to be a part of the film from the moment he read the script, knowing zombies would change it up big time. After getting the role, for research he asked his mother "Who is Mr. Darcy" and she replied "Colin" and she was very quick about it as if there was no hesitation in her mind! To her Colin Firth was Mr. Darcy! So he watched that version to he could gain the perspective of what people see in the character of Mr. Darcy, and "take that and add samurai swords".
Lily James admitted her Elizabeth Bennet was pretty angry and channels that anger into killing the undead. She talked about her training with the sisters as well and called them "this sort of lethal version of the Spice Girls" and jokingly said " I sorta forgot your not supposed to actually hit people". She also talked about how she had a scene when she was traveling on a horse, up a hill in the middle of the night into a horde of zombies and she asked if the zombie actors would give way for fear of running into them (since earlier she had actually stepped on an extras hand, not realizing he was a real person not a prop, and injured him) and when the zombies didn't move away from the horse, she ended up screaming "Jesus Christ get out of the way" as these extras were with in inches from being run over. She said it was the most frightening thing she ever had happen on a set.
Jack Huston, who plays Mr. Wickham admitted that he didn't get to do much of the fighting and Matt Smith who plays Mr. Collins said sadly that he didn't do any fighting because "he's just a coward, he hopes to get married but can't" He did joke that it was good that he got left out of the heavy training cause he had more days off, and they both joked about their plan on surviving the zombie apocalypse by escaping on a luxury yacht, living their days rather happy with a select few and those that they didn't like will walk the plank!
Burr Steers the Director also sat down with us and talked about his main goals was to make sure there was chemistry and yet boost the role of Darcy and Wickham's characters so they were more full and realized roles and not just coming off fawning over the females. He didn't want to make a so called chick flick. Also referenced "I Am Legend" and how the zombies retain some of who they were when they were living and don't view themselves as monsters.
The coolest part of what was revealed by a few of them was the fact that once bitten, one will turn slowly and can possibly hide the infection before it's blatantly obvious. Which makes the environment a quite paranoid situation, especially in a time where clothing covered 90% of the body.
The crowd inside Hall H were the first to see the teaser trailer for this special version of Pride and Prejudice and it truly looks like a pretty authentic version right down to the costumes and sets…..only now the zombies have altered the story line a bit…for the good from what I see. Now you'll have a chick flick and a bad ass action zombie movie rolled into one. What more could you want!! All I know is I will definitely be checking out Pride and Prejudice and Zombies when it hits theaters early next year!