By Fred Topel | Images property of Universal Pictures
Push is named after the psychic power of pushing, where a telepathic can put a thought in someone's head and they believe it 100%. On screen, that's just the actor staring intently. They do a little CG work on the eyes, but it's a staring contest. Camille Belle plays a pusher.
Camille Belle to Push
"I think before we shot those scenes, we were asking [director] Paul [McGuigan], 'Is there something we should do or a facial expression or our hands?'" Belle said. "We kind of decided to just be completely subtle with our abilities, with our powers. We decided to do it so the only addition was what they do later on, making your eyes black. Besides that, it was really just looking at the person."
The CGI effect is making the eye dilate so that the iris fills the entire eye, covering the white. "It really added to it because without that, it would've just been looking at the person, you know. It's all about the cerebral power that you have over the other person and to add that, that's kind of, I don't know, gives a visual understanding I guess of what they're doing."
Belle's character in Push is suffering from the effects of an experimental treatment, so she looks a little haggard. "I look half dead throughout the movie. I enjoyed it. I think it was the fun part of this job. It's a fun part, you get to look so different from your normal life. When you go to the premiere, days like today you look good and you want to look good, but then if you get to show up to work and look really terrible, it's also fun. You want to push it. 'Make me look even worse.' Okay, why not? If you get to push it, why not?"
When things get really intense, Belle has to use her fists and feet instead of her magical staring power. "The fight scene, I do live a pretty active lifestyle anyway. There wasn't anything specific that I had to do for the film. I think it's just being healthy, being fit because we're shooting long hours on location. You didn't have the food you were accustomed to so you really had to be healthy in order to continue working every day and feeling up for it. But for the fight scene, it was more about choreography than anything. It wasn't specific training for it, just about choreographing the scene and practicing it."