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Welcome to Oscar Isaac Network, our source dedicated to Guatemalan-born American actor and musician Oscar Isaac, celebrating seven years online this year. You’ll find the latest news, photos and media on Oscar. Check out the site and please come back soon.

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written by Luciana on November 17, 2018

Oscar Isaac Breaks Down His Most Iconic Roles to GQ

Oscar sat with GQ and talked about his most iconic roles in a 15 minutes video that worth the watching.

You might see around on the media mostly headlines talking about the negative parts of X-Men: Apocalypse but he really said much, much more. Like when he met with Nicolas Winding Refn on a restaurant and talked for 4 hours until they aligned what would be his character in Drive. Or when he met with JJ Abrams on a cafe in Paris and did read the whole Star Wars: The Force Awakens script on his iPhone. Or about Inside Llewyn Davis, when he met a guy in a movie set, the guy played in a Dave Van Ronk style and gave Oscar guitar lessons for the movie audition. Or A Most Violent Year, which was filmed near his home, and because of Jessica Chastain which he went to school and Julliard together. He said when he met Jessica he just finished Ex-Machina and was with shaved head and a big beard and she was like “Oh, I don’t know if its the guy we’re looking for”. Or his nerd site taking all the space when he start talking about Ex-Machina.

Watch the full interview below:

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written by Ray on March 24, 2015

It’s Oscar Isaac’s Year — In 1981, it was no walk in the park to live in New York City. Over the course of 12 months, the city was reportedly home to over 2,000 murders and more robberies than ever previously committed. Cupcake shops were not opening on a regular basis. In director J.C. Chandor’s A Most Violent Year, businessman Abel Morales (played by Oscar Isaac) attempts to navigate these brutal waters as his fortunes swell and the target on his back grows to keep pace.

More than 30 years later in a very different New York, Isaac himself is in the midst of an impressive ascent—albeit one marked by a lack of circling thugs. While the chorus of adulation for Isaac’s role in A Most Violent Year is still resounding, the Guatemalan-born actor doesn’t seem interested in pausing to enjoy it. In the coming months, he’ll appear opposite Mark Wahlberg and Garrett Hedlund in Mojave, he’ll star in the artificial intelligence thriller Ex-Machina and he’ll be deified by nerds everywhere for his roles in J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens as well as Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Apocalypse.

It’s an impressive slate for the Julliard graduate, but he says each of the films was one that he just couldn’t pass up. “Being asked to inhabit the psyche of someone over a period of time, it’s got to be a bit like falling in love,” he says. “You know, you can’t really quantify exactly why you want to play a particular part, but it’s something you just keep thinking about, that doesn’t leave your mind. That’s the barometer in how I choose a role.”

Still, Isaac’s quick to admit that choosing a job that involves light sabers is remarkably easy. “Not only are there these iconic props, but the sets, vehicles, droids and all these characters—you’re interacting with the characters that have been a part of everyone’s life for such a long time,” he says of Star Wars, for which he plays X-Wing fighter Poe Dameron. “Sometimes I pinch myself because it’s actually happening; it’s wild! But it’s funny, because you still have to do the same job you’re hired to do, which is between ‘action’ and ‘cut’ to be alive, be truthful and tell the story.”

Isaac, who got his big break in the 2013 Coen brothers movie Inside Llewyn Davis, says there’s no one sort of character or film that he finds appealing.

“In film it’s not the same as in theater, where you’re like, OK, I definitely want to give Hamlet a crack, or I want to play Willy Loman,” Isaac, who admits he aspires to one day direct, says. “There isn’t so much that one that I’m looking to do, it’s more about working with certain directors and finding stories that are compelling.”
That was certainly the case with Chandor and A Most Violent Year. Isaac’s Morales is an up-and-coming oil titan whose fleet of trucks—not to mention his family—is being terrorized by his competitor’s goons, but who refuses to lower himself to their level. It was a mindset Isaac took pains to understand.

“I had some issues figuring out why he was making his decisions,” Isaac says, “particularly the nonviolent choices, like why he felt so strongly against getting a gun to protect himself even though he was getting threats from all sides, and against his family.”

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written by Ray on December 30, 2013

Oscar Isaac, the authentic voice at the center of Coen brothers’ new ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ — If it were Llewyn Davis doing interviews here at the Ritz-Carlton Georgetown, he’d be late, distracted or desperately looking for an exit.

But instead of the fictional ’60s folkie he plays in the acclaimed new Coen brothers movie, “Inside Llewyn Davis,” Oscar Isaac couldn’t be more put together: calm, maybe serene, well groomed, handsome, welcoming and friendly in a way Llewyn would have been suspicious of and cagy about.

That may be because, whereas his character couldn’t catch a break on MacDougal Street, the 33-year-old actor finds himself a leading man for whom Oscar isn’t just his first name, but a real career possibility (he was nominated for a Golden Globe this week); who could pause among considerations for his next leading role to launch a successful music career.For the Guatemalan-born Isaac, whose father grew up in the District, music and acting were equal interests as he grew up in Miami.

There was a moment when his punk-ska band, Blinking Underdogs, threatened to break out. But, he says with a shrug, “every time there’d be a manager getting involved or it looked like we were going to sign with a manager, I’d always do something to [muck] it up, in a Llewyn type of way.”
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written by Ray on December 29, 2013

Oscar Isaac on ‘Inside Llewyn Davis,’ Working With the Coen Brothers, and Making Music — The latest film by the Coen Brothers, “Inside Llewyn Davis,” is a funny little flick. During their press tours for the film, the always-sardonic filmmakers have joked that the story is plotless, which is why they shoehorned a cat into the movie — to keep the audience happy.

Of course, this is another of their trademark defections from the depths of their own art; naturally, there’s a lot going on in this film, a deceptively simple tale of a hapless folksinger making his way during the early 1960s. The Greenwich Village setting, austere palate and wonderful and rich soundtrack hearken back to the kind of neighbourhood depicted on the cover of Bob Dylan’s “Freewheelin'” album. The character of Llewyn is based in part on a number of yeoman folkies, including the likes of Dave Van Ronk, the so-called Mayor of MacDougal Street.

Even more than any historical figure, it’s the film’s star Oscar Isaac that really brings the character to life, bringing both a sensitivity of performance and a deep musical understanding to the role. The casting is impeccable, and from the opening shots of the film where we hear him singing to a smoke-filled room, we’re absolutely transfixed in this man’s journey. Moviefone Canada spoke to Isaac soon after his Golden Globe nomination was announced, and delved into just what it’s like to be playing such a major part within the Coen’s world.

Moviefone Canada: For such a unique role I assume the casting process was reasonably taxing. Oscar Isaac: The casting process was pretty traditional. Ellen Chenoweth, the casting director, had a couple scenes and I did those. I had to record a song, and I did about 30 takes of the song. I sent in take 27.

Once cast, how much involvement you had in the way that the songs were performed on screen, the selection of songs? There were about two or three songs that were already specified in the script, but there were many that weren’t. I quickly fell in love with Dave Van Ronk’s music in particular, so I started learning a lot of his music. [Famed music supervisor] T-Bone [Burnett] and I got together and started playing music together. Sometimes I would go and just make an arrangement myself and bring it to T-Bone and he would change a few things, so it was a very collaborative process. The way the Coens work with T-Bone … they create a community. To be honest, people can’t really remember who came up with what. If you ask the Coens “who wrote this line?” they won’t remember. As soon as you give your idea you don’t own it anymore. It’s all the raw materials to build this thing, and I had an equal share in it.

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written by Ray on December 06, 2013

OSCARS Q&A: Oscar Isaac On ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ — Since graduating from Juilliard in 2005, Guatamalan-born and Miami-bred Oscar Isaac has been on a steady rise. With noticeable roles in films such as Robin HoodDrive and The Bourne Legacy, Isaac has been proving his worth as a film actor with something extra. That “something extra” has been fully realized with his breakthrough role as the title character in Joel and Ethan Coen’s tale of a struggling folk singer in the early 1960s, Inside Llewyn Davis. Since winning the Grand Prize at Cannes in May, the film has been building a high profile this season and promises to put Isaac, who does all of his own singing, right in the heart of the race.

Recount how you got this role, because the audition process was drawn out for the film. The Coen brothers thought the movie wouldn’t get made if they didn’t find the right actor. I heard about the audition process early on, and I was like, “I have got to get into this thing because I love the Coen brothers, I play music and I can sing.” I went in (to the audition) knowing that it was loosely based on (folk musician) Dave Van Ronk’s memoirs, and I knew he was this huge 6-foot-5, 200-pound Swede. I knew (I would be) a stretch, if they were trying to do a biopic. So I came in and I had a beard and I saw a photograph of this well-known musician—dark hair, dark beard. Suddenly, I calmed down and said, “So is this a reference shot? You guys are looking for people like that?” (Someone in casting) says, “Oh, no. He came in; he killed it.” It was like all the blood being drained out of my veins. They had been looking at a lot of really great musicians for the part because they wanted to have full songs performed live in the film, which is very unusual. I learned three songs and did the audition, and about a week later, they called me in to meet with the Coens. They’re the best to audition for. They are incredibly generous, and they’re quick to laugh, even just in conversation. So it was impossible to tell how it went because, apparently, they’re like that for everybody. A month went by, and I was just begging the universe to give me this one shot. Then I got a call (from) Joel. I remember him talking for a while before saying it, but then he finally said, “We’d love for you to do (the film), if you’d want to be a part of it.” I couldn’t believe it.

What was the process like as they were directing you? Everybody has to get used to the fact that they’re not going to be overly complimentary about anything. Everyone needs to just assume that the nod and the shrug mean, “Good job.” So immediately, the vanity goes away. You’re no longer looking for approval; you’re just doing the work. That was actually quite liberating because you’re not looking for that (approval) anymore. They don’t go in for the big talks; they don’t over-intellectualize anything. It’s usually just small modulations in rhythm and movement. But in between takes, it’s through osmosis that you get their type of tone. I remember Joel said one time that he doesn’t direct so much as manage tone. Just hearing their philosophies on filmmaking and art, you’re living their vibe. It was very beatnik. They’re in tune with their own taste, and because of that, they’re very open to experimenting and trying things.

You also mastered the guitar for this role. I’m not an accomplished musician by any stretch of the imagination, but I had some shitty punk bands in high school. I’ve always written and made music. I did not know how to play this style of music at all. I remember going to go see (executive music producer) T Bone (Burnett) for the first time. I was expecting he was going to show me videos and tell me I have to play like this and set up places for me to meet up with people who knew how to play like that. But I showed up, and it was much more Karate Kid. He would say, “Listen to this record,” and he would leave the room for an hour. (No one) told me how I was supposed to play, so I just naturally thought, “Oh, it’s based on Dave Van Ronk. I’m going to listen to his repertoire and watch how he plays.” I just totally obsessed on learning this style of playing and learning his songs and playing them like he played them. The acting challenge was to play (the music) in this character’s voice, but at the same time, it’s a movie about authenticity so I had to be authentic to how I was going to sing it. That was a crazy balance.

You really inhabited this morose character. Are you a Method actor? In between takes, I’d be smiling from ear to ear, because I was so excited to be there. I mean, I try to stay in it, but I was too happy to be there. I couldn’t really keep it morose. That contradiction of the energy, the happiness of being there, but at the same time being completely invested in this despair, that was scary, too. You think, “Are people going to care about this dude?”

You’ve just come out of the festival season—do you like this part of the process? Well, I like talking about the process. I never get tired of talking about this movie. I can be asked the same question about this movie and every time a new thought pops out. (I’m) still discovering it.

written by Ray on October 28, 2013

Inside Llewyn Davis Paris Premiere

Oscar Isaac was at the premiere for Inside Llewyn Davis in Paris on October 16th. He was seen with the Joel and Ethan Coen. 15 photos of Oscar Isaac at the Inside Llewyn Davis Premiere in Paris have been added to our gallery.

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written by Ray on October 28, 2013

Closing Night Screening Of Inside Llewyn

Oscar Isaac was at the Closing Night Screening of Inside Llewyn Davis on October 24th. 10 photos have been added to our gallery.

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