On the cusp of stardom, Australian newcomer Brenton Thwaites, talks about his new movie The Giver starring opposite Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, Katie Holmes, Alexander Skarsgaard and Taylor Swift.


Young Adult novels have never been so hot when it comes to movie screen adaptations, and making relatively unknown actors into bonafide stars. This time around, young newcomer Brenton Thwaites takes centre stage in the sci-fi drama The Giver. Based on Lois Lowry’s young adult novel of the same name, which has sold over 10 million copies worldwide, Thwaites stars as Jonas, a young man whose world is shaken up when he learns he is chosen to save his people who’ve been living in a prison of locked emotions.

In the movie, Jonas lives in a seemingly utopian world where everyone appears to be happy. This sense of harmony is created by a strictly engineered existence where the community is deprived of the so-called burden of memories. They have no notion of suffering, hunger, or violence. On the other hand, there’s no freedom, no choice and no individuality. Being treated with a regimented daily injection, the humans are genetically designed not to feel emotion or see color, and the scientifically-controlled environment prevents any visual distinctiveness that may stimulate sensation and alter the order of their seemingly utopian world. They live in sameness: identical homes, identical clothes, and an identical family structure.

The-Giver-Brenton-Thwaites-Apart from a bright intelligence, and integrity, there is something slightly ‘different’ and exceptional about Jonas: he has light eyes. At the Ceremony where youth is assigned their vocations, the Chief Elder (Meryl Streep) selects Jonas to inherit the position of the community’s Receiver of Memories. In this, most-honored position in the community, he will become the keeper of ancient memories before the time of ‘Sameness’. 

Jonas enters into training with the current Receiver of Memories, known as the Giver (Jeff Bridges). The old man is kind, but weary as he carries the burden of memory. His coaching with the Giver isolates Jonas from his friends. Absorbing memories from the Giver, Jonas learns about joy and pleasure, as well as true pain, sadness, war and death in the real world. As the dark and deadly truths of the community’s secret past are revealed, Jonas realizes that the model society in which they all live, is actually dystopian; and by depriving the community of memories they will never be conscious of joy, if they haven’t experienced suffering.

With the power of knowledge Jonas discovers that the stakes are worse than imagined, a matter of life and death for Fiona, his younger brother Gabriel, and even the Giver. At extreme odds he must escape to protect everyone – a challenge that no one has ever succeeded at before.

In this video interview, Brenton Thwaites talks about what it was like filming, and why fans will love the movie.




The Giver opens August 15 and stars Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, Brenton Thwaites, Alexander Skarsgard, Odeya Rush, Katie Holmes and Taylor Swift.




—Toni-Marie Ippolito


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