Ben Affleck

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On Covering Beyonce's "Crazy in Love" For Fifty Shades Darker
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PS: Speaking of movie projects, you are also a part of the new Fifty Shades Darker soundtrack. What was it like covering Beyoncé's "Crazy in Love"? Did you feel any pressure to do it justice? And have you gotten any feedback from her since it was released?
M: The song is an iconic song. First of all, the important thing was to make it masculine. I think that's part of why guys like my music as much as women do, because I'm able to convey the masculinity and the message, even if it's something that is emotional. So it was fun. I'm glad that they asked me to do it. I haven't heard from Beyoncé, no, but hopefully she thought we did it justice.

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On How Live by Night Explores the History of Race in America

Kindof looks like a #tbt #onset #livebynight

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POPSUGAR: What struck me the most about the movie after watching it is how deeply it explores the subject of race and ethnicity between Cubans, Italians, Afro-Latinos, and African Americans. Especially with Ben Affleck's character interracial relationship with Zoe Saldana. Is that something that drew you to the project after reading the script as an Afro Latino yourself?

Miguel: Yeah, absolutely. Aside from Live by Night being an amazing story about love, and about revenge, and all the action in the movie, I think that was probably the biggest thing that drew me to the story. The connection to how much race has been involved in so much of our history. Also, how we've overcome that as Latinos, as Afro-Latinos, and as African-Americans. As much as the tension has been apart of our history, we've overcome it in so many ways. And I think showing that history in this film was one of the things that I thought was really cool, and I wanted to be a part of it.

On His Experience Working With Ben Affleck and Zoe Saldana on Set

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PS: Did you have any jitters working with acting heavy weights like Ben Affleck and Zoe Saldana?
M: At first, I walked on the set and I wasn't sure how it was gonna be. I'll be honest with you, I was a little nervous. I wasn't sure how they were gonna act. To my comfort and to my surprise, they were very welcoming. Very warm. It felt very family oriented on set. As soon as I met Zoe, it felt like we had done something for a long time. She made it really easy to get right into character.

PS: How was Ben as a director?
M: Ben was incredible. As much as he's chill, he knows what he wants. That makes it really easy to get the job done because he believes in the people that he's brought on to see his vision through and then he allows everything to happen. If there's anything that he needs to tweak, he's very easy and calm about making it happen. So if it's a camera angle he wants to get, or if he wants to tweak the delivery of something, it's just very calm. I think he got everything he wanted.

PS: What would you say was your favorite moment from filming on set?
M: The first day I shot, we were in Savannah, Georgia filming a beautiful boat scene, and we pull up to this club that Graciella and Esteban own where it's pretty much for Cubans only, and it's only authentic Cuban music and drinks. I was nervous, but everyone was really cool. I didn't have any lines that day. All I had to do was sit in the boat, thank God! [Laughs] I was getting to know Zoe that day. I hit it off with her. Our conversation was awesome and bonding with her was a really great experience.

On Transforming Into His Character, Esteban Suarez

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PS: Was it fun playing a character like Esteban? What went into preparing for that role?

M: A lot of what Esteban represents, where he comes from, and what he believes in, I could relate a lot to. I felt like I could bring Esteban to life. He's a nationalist, and he believes in where he comes from. It guides who he is. He's artistic, he's creative and he had to learn to become a businessman even in spite of his passion for arts. As a musician I'd had to learn to do the same thing. He also has a tremendous sense of family with his sister Graciella [played by Zoe Saldana]. I have a brother who I'm very close with. He's my best friend, so there's a lot of parallels I drew to who I am in my life.

PS: The movie is also a period piece set in the 1920s. How was that process as far as transforming your look? When you first appeared on screen I almost didn't recognize you with the slicked-back hair and shaved beard!

M: [Laughs] It was fun! Aside from every morning having to cover my tattoos. That was kind of the most annoying part. It was amazing to put those clothes on. It was really cool to kind of get back into that mode of how classy it was. And realize how much detail was put into little things, like the ties, the bow ties, the cuff links, the shoes, the socks, and all of those things. It was incredible.

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