'10 Cloverfield Lane' Interviews: John Goodman And Mary Elizabeth Winstead Offer Tips For Surviving The Apocalypse

The Cloverfield connection is definitely helping build buzz for 10 Cloverfield Lane, even if it's more of a spiritual link than a narrative one. But in truth, we were sold on this movie long before we knew what it'd be called. Dan Trachtenberg's directorial debut brings together three top-notch talents – John GoodmanMary Elizabeth Winstead, and John Gallagher Jr. — into one cramped underground shelter. With that cast, it's pretty much a given that sparks will fly, no matter where the story takes them, what the film ends up being called, or what's really lying outside that doomsday bunker.

At a recent press day in New York, I got the chance to sit down with Goodman and Winstead to discuss their new movie — its ties to Cloverfield, its feminist slant, Goodman's terrifying character, and what it's taught them about prepping for doomsday. Check out our 10 Cloverfield Lane John Goodman and Mary Elizabeth Winstead interviews after the jump. 

If you've grown up loving John Goodman, like so, so many of us have, his 10 Cloverfield Lane character feels like a jarring change of pace. He's done intimidating and mean and even evil before, but Howard may just be his most terrifying role yet. Speaking with me this weekend, Winstead admitted it took some getting used to:

[E]specially in the beginning, when John Goodman is supposed to be terrorizing me and intimidating me, he was doing such a good job of it that I was sort of confused inside, because I've grown up loving him and he's just the most endearing, lovable person. So that was a little bit tricky to kind of get used to. But he very quickly convince me that he was this person because he's just that good.

So how, exactly, did this "endearing, lovable person" get inside the head of a such a monster? "With a drill," Goodman joked. He continued, more seriously: "You have to find out what he believes in most of all, what he wants most of all. He's got a very narrow scope of range. And make that the most important thing for the guy." However, he said, he doesn't feel too bad for Howard. "[He's a] tragic figure in the sense that he's got bad wiring in his head," said Goodman. "Outside of that, no." He made his choices.

As for how they themselves would survive the apocalypse, Goodman and Winstead had very different advice to offer. Hers was eminently practical. "Build a doomsday bunker, I guess. I mean, that's the way to go," she told me. "That's the interesting thing about the movie, is that as crazy as Howard is, he's kind of right about a lot of things."

He, on the other hand, suggested a more relaxed approach (and one that'd probably make his doomsday prepper character roll his eyes). "Ah, just enjoy it," said Goodman. "Yeah, you're gonna go anyway, so make the most of it. Take a lot of pictures. Take a lot of selfies."

Watch our full 10 Cloverfield Lane interviews with John Goodman and Mary Elizabeth Winstead below. 10 Cloverfield Lane opens March 11.

10 Cloverfield Lane John Goodman Interview

  • 0:03: When he realized 10 Cloverfield Lane was a Cloverfield movie.
  • 0:54: His involvement in the 10 Cloverfield Lane viral marketing campaign.
  • 1:19: How to get into the head of a monster like Howard and whether he's a tragic figure.
  • 2:29: Working with Mary Elizabeth Winstead and John Gallagher Jr.
  • 2:58: What he's learned about prepping for doomsday.
  • 3:14: Advice for surviving the apocalypse.
  • 10 Cloverfield Lane Mary Elizabeth Winstead Interview

  • 0:03: What attracted her to the role of Michelle in 10 Cloverfield Lane.
  • 0:39: 10 Cloverfield LaneRoomKimmy Schmidt, and other stories of women breaking out.
  • 1:18: Michelle's 10 Cloverfield Lane manicure.
  • 1:47: Working with John Goodman and John Gallagher Jr.
  • 2:23: When she realized 10 Cloverfield Lane was a Cloverfield movie.
  • 2:52: What she's learned about prepping for doomsday.
  • 3:22: Advice for surviving the apocalypse.