In 2014, Paul Dano landed a role in “Love and Mercy”, based on the life of the Beach Boys singer Brian Wilson. In the film, Dano played a young version of Wilson, a role that required him to play the piano and sing. Feeling confident in his musical abilities, Dano told the director that he could sing. But once he found out that he would be singing for Brian Wilson himself, Dano freaked out a bit.
He said entertainment weekly‘I was like,’Wow! That’s something you should have known. He was so scared… We recorded something and sent it to Brian. Then later Brian and Melinda (Wilson’s wife) called together and they were so excited. And once that happened, I actually felt like, ‘Okay, now I can get on with this, I can go do my job.'”
Despite Wilson’s blessing, Dano’s nerves returned when it came time to film a specific scene recreating one of Wilson’s rawest performances. “I was shaking,” Dano said. Rolling Stone. “It was silly trying to make my voice sound exactly like Brian’s. His range is so crazy.” However, it seems that the months Dano spent preparing for the role paid off. The film was not only a hit with critics, but Wilson himself gave it his stamp of approval. “I saw her at the Toronto Film Festival and Brian sat across the aisle,” Dano recalled. “He said, ‘That’s a really good movie,’ and he repeated it several times.”
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