Lawrence Michael Levine felt like he pushed his cast members too hard during the filming of his passion project, a dark comedy movie starring Aubrey Plaza.

AceShowbiz -Writer/director Lawrence Michael Levine worried he was putting Aubrey Plaza “through some emotional torture” for his labour of love movie, “Black Bear“.

In the dark comedy, the “Parks and Recreation” star is filmmaker Allison, whose stay at a secluded lake house doesn’t quite go according to plan – and Levine is thrilled with his leading lady’s “riveting” performance, even though he worried about pushing her too hard.

He told HeyUGuys, “Really, one of the biggest thrills of my life – and I imagine other dramatic writers as well – is seeing their work performed at the highest level.”

“So, it’s actually a thrill. It was fun and exciting. It was a little hard because at times I felt like I was putting people – and (Plaza) in particular – through some emotional torture, which was kind of odd.”

“But you just need to remind yourself, you’re making a movie and that’s the job she signed up for. It’s your job to help her get where she needs to be, and her performance comes off. But it was exciting, it was riveting…”

Other challenges included the limited shoot time allotted for the movie, which also stars “Catch-22” standout Christopher Abbott and “True Detective” ‘s Sarah Gadon, and the nighttime setting required for many of the scenes.

Levine explained, “I was so busy during the shoot and so anxious – it was a really difficult shoot, we didn’t have a lot of time.”

“The original schedule was 18 (days), and then just from b**ching and moaning, I got another two.”

“I think it ended up being 20 days, and they were not long days either because everything’s at night… We had eight hours of darkness and that’s all the time we had to shoot.”

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