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Colin Farrell

How Denzel Washington and Dan Gilroy created an unforgettable idealist for ‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’

How Denzel Washington and Dan Gilroy created an unforgettable idealist for ‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’

Filmmaker Dan Gilroy was standing on the corner of 9th and Broadway in downtown Los Angeles on a recent sunny afternoon, looking north at the canyon of marquees and buildings stretching out in front of him.

This particular strip of Broadway provided the location for a key climactic sequence in Gilroy’s latest movie, “Roman J. Israel, Esq.,” a character study and legal drama starring Denzel Washington. Gilroy recalled how he and his cinematographer Robert Elswit walked the street many times in preparation for shooting, getting the timing right for the pace of the dialogue.

“It’s funny, I never really came down here during the day. It’s very different,” Gilroy said....

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