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Moon Knight Cinematographer Reveals What It's Really Like To Work With Oscar Isaac - Exclusive

Although he's impressed audiences over the years with stellar turns in such films as "Inside Llewyn Davis," "Ex Machina," the "Star Wars" sequel trilogy, and "Dune," actor Oscar Isaac seems intent on escalating his challenges with each of his acting gigs. In fact, Isaac's latest project — the Marvel Studios miniseries "Moon Knight" — appears to be the actor's most ambitious undertaking to date, as he plays two distinctly different characters who share the same body.

In "Moon Knight" — which wrapped up on Disney+ May 4, with its season finale — Isaac stars as U.S. Marine and mercenary Marc Spector, who, due to his struggles with dissociative identity disorder, has an alternate personality. As a result, Marc also identifies as Steven Grant, a mild-mannered British museum gift shop clerk who shockingly learns of Marc when his alter-ego is trying to take back his persona.

Marc needs Steven to give up his stronghold over their body since he needs to summon the suit and powers of the superhero Moon Knight from the Egyptian god of the moon, Khonshu (voiced by F. Murray Abraham). If Steven doesn't relinquish, the world faces the looming threat of a dangerous cult leader, Arthur Harrow (Ethan Hawke), who is looking to unleash the powers of the Egyptian goddess Ammit to punish people for their future crimes.

One of the filmmakers who had front-row access to watch Isaac as both Marc and Steven — and their superhero alter-egos Moon Knight and Mr. Knight — is cinematographer Andrew Droz Palermo. Having served as the director of photography for directors Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead on "Moon Knight" episodes 2 and 4, Palermo shared some of his observations about Isaac's acting talents with Looper in an exclusive interview.

Palermo says 'the core' of Moon Knight is Isaac

Every filmmaker who's worked with Oscar Isaac on "Moon Knight" — which also includes executive producer Grant Curtis and production designer Stefania Cella to EP-director Mohamed Diab and his cinematographer Gregory Middleton — all agree that Isaac is a gifted collaborator who cares about all aspects of the "Moon Knight" production. Palermo is no different.

"He is such a filmmaker. He's not just an actor. He is thinking about the whole [production]," Palermo told Looper. "Often, I felt, it was my job to stay out of his way, like with the camera, to give him the space to move, give him the space to create when he's in a scene, not box him in, not give him these stiff parameters to work within, and let him explore. And he's such a fantastic actor. To me, the core of the show is Oscar. That's the thing that I return to when I'm watching it now. I'm so impressed with him."

Also starring May Calamawy, all six episodes including the season finale of "Moon Knight" are streaming exclusively on Disney+.