10 things you need to know about THE MAZE RUNNER

We bring you the facts about Wes Ball’s latest film…

This week, THE MAZE RUNNER – based on James Dashner’s novel of the same name – is released in Irish cinemas. The film stars Dylan O’Brien as Thomas, who awakens in a box hurtling to an unknown place, with no idea who he is or where he is going. His destination is The Glades, a community populated with young men like himself, and surrounded by an intricate maze that hosts unknown horrors. It’s not long before Thomas decides he wants to join ‘the Runners’, who search the maze for a shot at escape.
Movies.ie decided to gather together the facts about THE MAZE RUNNER, which also stars Kaya Scodelario, Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Will Poulter.

1. Persistence is key
Actor Blake Cooper continuously campaigned for an audition for the role of Chuck via Twitter. He sent Wes Ball tweet after tweet after tweet stating that he was made for the role. Ball eventually told Cooper to send his audition to the casting director. Blake Cooper’s persistence definitely paid off, since the casting director thought Cooper was the perfect Chuck.

2. Accent work
Of the largely British cast, only actor Thomas Brodie-Sangster, who plays Newt, got to keep his accent. The rest of the UK actors adopted US accents for the film.

3. Immersive Research
To get the cast ready for the shoot, director Wes Ball had the actors spend a night on the outdoor set of ‘The Glades’.

4. Take a Chance
Director Wes Ball originally met with Fox Studios to direct a feature length version of his short film RUIN. They, in turn, offered him the chance to direct THE MAZE RUNNER. That’s quite the twist; Catherine Hardwicke was originally set to direct.

5. The hair maketh the man
Director Wes Ball originally rejected Dylan O’Brien for the role of Thomas, since he didn’t like his hair, saying “He had Teen Wolf hair and I couldn’t see past that”. Thankfully, Ball saw a photo of O’Brien with a shaved head and called him back for a second audition.

6. Best Day Ever!
Kaya Scodelario’s favorite day on set was when she spent an entire shooting day on the top of a tree with O’Brien. She said that was when they really spent time together as actors and got to know each other better.

7. Inspiration
Director, Wes Ball originally pitched THE MAZE RUNNER as ‘LORD OF THE FLIES meets LOST’. We can see the inspiration.

8. Snakes!
THE MAZE RUNNER was filmed in Baton Rouge, Lousiana, and the production had to hire snake wranglers to make sure the areas where they were filming were snake free. Before filming began the wranglers found 25 venomous snakes. The biggest one they found was a 5 foot rattlesnake. Eek!

9. Cameo
Author James Dashner makes a cameo toward the end of the film. Keep an eye our for him!

10. When Can I See It?
THE MAZE RUNNER is released in Irish cinemas on October 10th 2014

Words: Brogen Hayes