The actor was burdened with wearing a heavy, think, big-headed super-villain suit throughout much of his screen time in Aquaman which is every bit as difficult as it might sound. "When you first put it on it's not very intuitive," Abdul-Mateen II tells Comicbook.com in an interview featured in the video above.
"You think you're looking straight and you're actually looking up," he explained. "And then you have to look down in order to look straight and you kind of have to muscle it around. What I always say is that you have to tell the suit what to do. You can not let the suit wear you, because it will. You have to wear the suit. But once you do that, man, you step into that thing and it's just on and cracking from there."
Still, while much of the film covers Abdul-Mateen II's face from actual screen time with big red eyes on a giant helmet, the actor was pushed to bring some intense emotional beats to life.
"It's interesting, I brought one thing to the table and I turned it into a place that was real," Abdul-Mateen II said. "It was real for me and then James [Wan] said 'Hey, more.' I said, 'For real?' He said, 'Yeah.' And I do more. And he said, 'More.' I said 'Really?' I said, 'Okay I'll give more.' And he said... he comes back, 'More!' I'm like, 'Okay, well now I see what kind of movie we're making,' but when you're doing it like that, it really... every time you have to take it a step further, you have to root it in something that was more real. You can't just push for it. You have to say okay, well let me dig deeper, dig deeper, dig deeper. And then eventually you make something that the characters can see, that the audience can see and experience on a epic scale, but that they can also relate to, relate to the size of that truth."
For more from Abdul-Mateen II, Jason Momoa, and the cast and crew of Aquaman, stay tuned to Comicbook.com and share your thoughts about the film and interviews in our comment section!
Aquaman hits theaters on December 21, 2018.