Ewan McGregor achieves the impossible in The Impossible. He is charged with playing the paternal leader of a family caught in the middle of the worst tsunami in history. As chronicled in The Impossible trailer, he, Naomi Watts and their three young co-stars are charged with capturing the unthinkable as it really happened to a family of five in Thailand in 2004. "It was important to me," McGregor said of getting it right.
With thousands of lives lost, the story of The Impossible may be one family's struggle, but it reflects the vastness of the disaster and the cast felt a need to portray it in such a way that gave those who died their rightful due onscreen... as seen in this The Impossible clip. Through his portrayal of Henry, McGregor sought to personify those who survived. "He's a very gentle man, and quite calm. He dealt with things in a very pragmatic way."
McGregor also spoke about the massive effort to cinematically capture the tsunami itself as realistically as possible, without putting the actors in harm's way. "I was never worried for my safety," he admitted. "But, how do you visually create the tsunami using real water? Now, I wonder how he [director Juan Antonio Bayona] did it. The tsunami sequence in the film is absolutely brutal to watch."