"I didn’t know if I had it in me to give such a tender performance. It scared me," Hammer shares, adding that director Luca Guadagnino "assuaged all my apprehensions by helping me to realize that fear and desire are part and parcel."
The indie film, which received critical acclaim at this year's Sundance Film Festival, made Hammer realize that the challenges he faced were a personal reward as well.
"So much of this movie is about stripping everything away and exposing yourself,” he says. “I grew up in conservative white America, where you just don’t talk about yourself, your desires, wanting to express your sensuality --it’s taboo. To be fully immersed in Luca’s world was just an incredible gift."
"I know that I will carry the experience of making this movie for the rest of my life,” Hammer adds. "I don’t want to say movies can change the world, but if we can change one person’s perspective, we can change that person’s world.”