For his latest film, James Grey’s The Lost City of Z, Robert Pattinson ventured deep into the Colombian jungle. Based on David Grann’s non-fiction best seller, the film follows Colonel Percival Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam), an early 20th century British explorer obsessed with finding a fabled civilization buried in the Amazon. At the film’s world premiere at the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s New York Film Festival on Saturday night, Pattinson, who plays Fawcett’s trusted companion Henry Costin, regaled Vulture with his own adventures filming in the jungle — like avoiding the massive, deadly spiders in his hotel room.
“There was this weird thing that happened in the hotel,” Pattinson told Vulture. “It flooded everyday at 3 p.m., because we went in the rainy season. No one realized it was the rainy season, and somehow all these massive spiders would float into our room. At night there would be like an inch of water in the room, it was kind of terrifying. I made a little hammock on top of my bed just hanging there, in terror.”
Meanwhile, Grey started filming the bugs. “There was one that was called a Brazilian wandering spider,” Pattinson said. “James, who is normally very neurotic about anything wildlife related, saw this spider, and it is incredibly beautiful, and he was like, ‘We need to get the B camera, get on this, get on this. Somebody get it to move.’ And he was prodding this spider, which is like six-inches wide, with a stick, trying to get it to do something interesting. And the Colombian crew was like, ‘That is the most potent spider in the world.’ There were a lot of situations like that.”
Pattinson said things also got ropey — British for sketchy — while he was filming in the jungle. “There were moments where me and Charlie were going through with machetes and we were in totally virgin jungle humans never went through,” Pattinson said. “And they were like, ‘Yeah, just do a beautiful shot and hack through it with machetes.’ Me and Charlie were just like, ‘Uh, this feels like really ropey to do this.’”