Jonathan Majors Interview: The Harder They Fall | Screen Rant

The Harder They Fall is a Western like no other as it revolves entirely around some of the most iconic Black cowboys in the Old West. The story centers on Nat Love as he reassembles his old crew in order to get revenge on the man who killed his parents after he is sprung from prison.

Related: The Harder They Fall: Every Real-Life Historical Figure

Ahead of the film's theatrical and streaming debut, Screen Rant got the opportunity to speak with star Jonathan Majors to discuss The Harder They Fall, his return to the Western genre, and building chemistry with on-screen partner Zazie Beetz.

Screen Rant: I love that with every new project you've done, you always seem to find a new genre, but this sees you go back to the Western genre from Hostiles. What was it like revisiting the Western genre for you?

Jonathan Majors: We had unfinished business, I think. I mean, the Western genre is interesting, because with Hostiles I was meeting it, you know, I was fully engaged in it and I found the wildness of it was something I really liked. So I was a little bit ahead of the game when we started The Harder They Fall because I've already tasted it, you know, and wanted to explore it even more and got the chance to do that for a lot longer because we had to do the shutdown and I did the shutdown in New Mexico. So I got to sit with it a lot longer, I got my feel.

So with the shutdown that you mentioned, did you use that time to further expand your knowledge on Nat Love or to prep more for the action sequences?

Jonathan Majors: I'd say both. It was five months, I think. I guess the anecdote would be like the ring scene, that moment. I kept that ring all through lockdown, the initial production shutdown and lockdown, I kept it with me everywhere I went for that time and to me, it was just more time to invest in the world, invest in the story. It was also a reminder that we're gonna do this film come hell or high water, we're gonna make it and we're going to be ready as a company.

So I really got to just spend more time with that, I didn't really investigate him anymore, it's more like the script was just something that was around and I just kind of kept it and kept my cowboy boots on and kept wearing my hats and kept riding. I got stronger at my riding when I could because people were leaving, it gave me a longer process and a quieter process.

Since you do bring up the ring scene, yours and Zazie's characters, their relationship, and their chemistry, I feel is so vital to the film. What was it like for you to build that off-camera before bringing it into the takes?

Jonathan Majors: That really has to do with the casting, like, who Zazie Beetz is as a person, you know. No one makes you do a film, so she wanted to do the film, she wanted to come in and embody this character, embody this world. A big part of her characterization, though, not all of our characterization, had a lot to do with Nat Love. We rode together a lot in our training and we had to put together pieces and sequences in which we literally moved together, you know, we called it the dance of death.

When the two of us were back to back in the shootout, we built that together, we had the concept of it, but then it was like, "What is it for us?" It was more eye contact, always staying connected, speaking our language to each other, you know, the gentle ballet of the movement and then like the aggression of "push!" when that happens and we go, you know? It's like that type of warrior love affair that they have for each other and that happened over mezcal at restaurants sometimes or it happened early in the morning shooting guns with each other.

Next: Is The Harder They Fall Based On A True Story? History Explained

The Harder They Fall hits Netflix on November 3.

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