By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist August 28, 2012 at 3:09PM
Some people drop acid just to trip balls, or if you're Roger Sterling, to keep up with your progressive, younger wife. But for Shia LaBeouf it's all about art, man, and the actor went the extra mile for his upcoming movie "The Necessary Death Of Charlie Countryman."
Now on the surface, the film doesn't seem to lend itself to drug-taking as preparation, as it centers on young man who puts his life on the line to protect a woman from a vicious crime boss. But it appears his character does have time for an acid trip (it's set in hedonistic Europe after all), and LaBeouf made sure he knew what it was all about. "There's a way to do an acid trip like 'Harold & Kumar,' and there's a way to be on acid," he told USA Today (via Vulture). "What I know of acting, Sean Penn actually strapped up to that (electric) chair in 'Dead Man Walking.' These are the guys that I look up to."
And while it's easy to be glib, if this were a more "respected" or older actor, people wouldn't bat an eye. So perhaps there is something to admire about all this, particularly with LaBeouf showing a bit more fearlessness now that he's freed from the "Transformers" franchise, whipping out his dong for a Sigur Ros video and signing up to do some hardcore sex in Lars Von Trier's "Nymphomaniac." And it is somewhat endearing to hear him say: "If I could give the money back and get all the credibility in the world that I'm seeking, I would do it tomorrow. In a heartbeat."
Or maybe it's just an actor going a bit too far to prepare for a scene that is probably all of thirty seconds. It's not like 'Charlie Countryman' is about dropping acid (or maybe it is). And he admits it ruffled a few feathers, saying that the shoot might have been "Too real for a (director) who's trying to keep a diplomatic set."
We'll find out soon enough if that dedication to being real pays off. But as folks who see "Lawless" this week will realize, there is a very good actor in LaBeouf who hasn't really had a chance to show off his skills yet.