Ryan Gosling cast Matt Smith after watching him talk to aliens "like a boss" on 'Doctor Who'.
The 32-year-old actor was the 11th Doctor in the BBC sci-fi series and his starring performance on the show convinced Ryan, 34, of his suitability for the villainous role in his new Gothic fairytale 'Lost River'.
He recalled: "One day I was watching TV. I heard Matt Smith's voice coming at me. It was Doctor Who and there was an episode where he was in a car screaming at these aliens and telling them where to go. Like a boss. Just telling all these spaceships what was what.
"As an actor I know that's pretty hard to do, because I'm pretty sure those spaceships weren't there. I thought, 'Who is this guy?'
"There's no-one like him. He's like one of those actors from the Seventies, just themselves and nobody else. I said, 'I have to work with that guy.' So I tracked him down."
Meanwhile, Matt said his audition for the film took on an unusual twist.
He recalled: "It's the only audition where I've talked for a good hour about what we like: music, books, everything. Then we started the scene, and the camera ran out so we ended up doing it on Ryan's iPhone."