‘Kandahar’ Interview: Director Ric Roman Waugh On Clicking With Gerard Butler, Challenges Of Shooting In Saudi Arabia

It’d be alright with me if director Ric Roman Waugh and Gerard Butler only made movies with one another from now on. The duo returns to theaters this weekend with Kandahar, a pulse-pounding thriller that finds Butler’s undercover CIA operative Tom Harris trapped behind enemy lines when his cover is blown. What unfolds is a gripping, complex look at post-war Afghanistan as the many forces vying for power converge to capture or kill Tom and his translator before they can get to safety.

This is Waugh and Butler’s third collaboration after Angel Has Fallen and Greenland. Yes, please. Keep them coming. I had the chance to speak with Waugh about working with Butler on Kandahar, what makes this story of the Middle East unique, and what it was like shooting in Saudi Arabia as the first major production to do so since Lawrence of Arabia.

This was a real treat for me, as I’ve been a fan of Waugh since he directed Dwayne Johnson in the underrated Snitch in 2013. He’s come a long way since then, and I can’t wait to see what else the future holds.

Kandahar is in theaters now. You can check out the interview with Ric Roman Waugh below, and my review of the film here.

Travis Hopson has been reviewing movies before he even knew there was such a thing. Having grown up on a combination of bad '80s movies, pro wrestling, comic books, and hip-hop, Travis is uniquely positioned to geek out on just about everything under the sun. A vampire who walks during the day and refuses to sleep, Travis is the co-creator and lead writer for Punch Drunk Critics. He is also a contributor to Good Morning Washington, WBAL Morning News, and WETA Around Town. In the five minutes a day he's not working, Travis is also a voice actor, podcaster, and Twitch gamer. Travis is a voting member of the Critics Choice Association (CCA), Washington DC Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA), and Late Night programmer for the Lakefront Film Festival.