‘Army of Thieves’ star Matthias Schweighöfer talks directing Netflix’s ‘Army of the Dead’ prequel

Netflix

(NOTE LANGUAGE) Actor Matthias Schweighöfer [mah-TEE-us SHWIGE-hoof-fer] reprises his role as nerdy safecracker extraordinaire Sebastian/Dieter in Netflix’s new Army of the Dead prequel, Army of Thieves

Produced by AOTD‘s Zack Snyder and Deborah Snyder, and directed by Schweighöfer himself, Army of Thieves shows the time before he travels from Germany to a zombie-overrun Las Vegas with his eyes on a vault-sealed fortune.

The film also stars Fast and the Furious series veteran Nathalie Emmanuel, who plays Gwendoline, a mysterious woman who recruits Sebastian to crack a trio of masterpiece safes.

It’s a big movie, and Matthias had previously only directed a few projects in his native Germany.

“There was a lot of pressure,” he admits, “but on the other hand, you know, it was like a fairy tale…I love Dieter so much…and I was so honored when [the Snyders said] ‘Hey, let’s do a spin-off for that character.'”

While heist films are nothing new, Schweighöfer said they worked hard on how to make this one different, to make the normally dry practice of opening safes exciting to the viewer.

“[In movies] It’s always like, ‘OK, how do we get in the vault?’ [then] some explosion or whatever and bring the money out.”

He continues, “But here, you’re right. We had this adventurous work of creating three crazy safes in Europe, and I love the idea, OK, I never saw the interior of a safe, how that works to turn the tumbler and then what? What would happen? And what if the safe can detect by the presence of someone who is like the f***ing the safe up?”

He adds, “I’m really proud of the work we did.”  

Army of Thieves is currently #1 on Netflix’s movie rankings.

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