Bird Box Barcelona Interview: Directors Àlex and David Pastor discuss the Netflix sequel

ComingSoon Editor-in-Chief Tyler Treese spoke Aviary Barcelona Directors and writers Àlex and David Pastor on international stories and filming with real blindfolds (read more interviews). The film is now streaming on Netflix.

ComingSoon Editor-in-Chief Tyler Treese spoke Aviary Barcelona Directors and writers Àlex and David Pastor on international stories and filming with real blindfolds (read more interviews). The film is now streaming on Netflix.

“From the producers of the global phenomenon Bird Box comes Bird Box Barcelona, ​​an extension of the film that captivated audiences in 2018,” reads the film’s official synopsis. “After a mysterious force decimates the world’s population, Sebastian must master his own journey of survival through the deserted streets of Barcelona. As he forges shaky alliances with other survivors and they attempt to flee the city, an unexpected and even more sinister threat arises.”


Tyler Treese: Alex, the original Bird Box was a huge hit for Netflix. How exciting was it to expand this universe instead of doing a complete makeover to provide a whole different perspective on a global problem?

Alex Pastor: Well, that’s what really drew us to the project. This idea of ​​directing a film was part of a mosaic of stories designed to tell more of a global story. Instead of telling it linearly and making a direct sequel or prequel to the original, we create these different chapters, these parallel stories that could be set in different parts of the world. We thought this was something that had never been done before and wouldn’t have been possible before a global platform like Netflix.

David, you both wrote the film too. I was curious about the creative process. Were you given some kind of franchise bible of what you could and couldn’t do, or were you given free reign? What was it like for you to master this process?

David Pastor: Well, I think what attracted us as filmmakers to this project was the freedom we had. All Netflix knew was that they wanted a Bird Box story set in Spain, and of course that story had to respect and be consistent with the rules of the original. But other than that it was one of those situations where (they said, ‘knock yourselves out guys.’ Come up with something that excites you.” As Alex said, we didn’t want to just repeat the original or the audience as directors give something it had already seen. So it was up to us to find a way to deliver something different and then approach the Bird Box myth from a whole different perspective.

Alex, did the actors actually blindfold the blindfolded scenes? I couldn’t tell. Is it harder to pretend to be blind?

Alex Pastor: It depends on. It depends on the actors.

David Pastor: And it depends on the scene.

Alex Pastor: It depends on the scene. There are scenes that are too risky to actually perform blindfolded. So they are not. So sometimes they can see… they’re a little see-through. Sometimes they even have holes that you then patch up with CGI.

David Pastor: Especially for the little girl, you know? As with the little girl, it would be too dangerous to have her in a place where she could fall and basically kill herself. (Laugh). So in these cases we would call it the Ninja Turtles blindfold, which looked like a Ninja Turtle style blindfold with two holes. And then we would delete them with CGI.

Alex Pastor: But we’ve had some actors who liked to be a bit more methodical and refused to wear clear blindfolds and they wanted to be able to go blindly through the scene, which… whatever helps the actor, we’re willing

David, for any disaster movie, the human interactions are important. Can you elaborate on the human element of the film and what drew you to this dynamic where they have to trust others to survive but also have to be quite wary of whoever they interact with?

David Pastor: Yes, I think we probably learned that during the actual pandemic that we’ve all been going through. This balance between trusting other people, but also fear of others, fear of contagion. That’s something I think, as we’ve all experienced it, we had a lot in our minds as we were shooting the film and talking to the actors about their interactions. That was a very important part of the film. I think that’s something that people can relate to, even more than when the original came out in 2018.

I know you’re not the one making these decisions, but how much potential do you see in Bird Box becoming even bigger as a franchise? It seems that there are so many options.

Alex Pastor: Certainly. I’d love to see what someone in Korea or Tokyo could do with this story and see new perspectives. I think that’s what’s so powerful and original about this franchise. So I’m really looking forward to sitting down and watching someone else, from a very different country than ours, with a very different perspective, try and blow my mind.

David Pastor: I mean we’ve seen America, we’ve seen Europe. I think we should look at Asia, you know? That would be great. And in a way it reminds us a bit of the World War Z book – not the movie, which is fine, but the original World War Z book. Max Brooks really had such a mosaic of what was going on around the world during the zombie outbreak, you know? I think this could be something really cool.