English actor Emily Blunt (The Devil Wears Prada) and American actor/director John Krasinski (The Office) have been a celebrity couple for almost a decade, but you'd never describe them as a tabloid fixture.

It's easy to forget they are even a couple, despite getting hitched in 2010, keeping their personal lives completely private.

But that policy, whether official or not, appears to have been set aside for the new horror film A Quiet Place, in which they both star, and which Krasinski directed and co-wrote.

The film sees the pair mirror their real-life family, playing the married parents of two children. Fortunately, the similarities end there, given the nail-biting peril the family faces in the movie.

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Blunt and Krasinski recently sat down (separately) with TimeOut in New York to discuss the film, with Blunt immediately admitting they had been wary about working together.

"We realised it might be a fine line for us to walk because we had never worked professionally [together]," Blunt tells TimeOut. "Obviously we work in life as a couple, we adore being with each other. But I think we hadn't seen each other's professional sides before."

Blunt says it ended up being a positive, if somewhat full-on, experience for the couple.

"A Quiet Place took over our lives for two years. This is very much his baby but it was so close to home for me by the end of it. It's also such intense material and we drove to work together and we drove home together and we drank so much whiskey during this whole process to kind of decompress at the end of these crazy days."

Intense is right. Taking place in a deliberately ambiguous, post-global disaster, rural setting, A Quiet Place introduces us to swift-moving, near-indestructible monsters that stalk the scant remains of humanity. The creatures are blind but have incredibly good hearing, and hunt their prey based on sound. So you better not make any, or you're dead.

Krasinski and Blunt play a mother and father desperately trying to stay silent and keep their young family alive. The film deals directly with the terror of being unable protect your children, something Blunt admitted was traumatic to deal with.

"What this character experiences is truly my worst nightmare because I worry irrationally about my children anyway, I think most parents do. And so this heightened version of not being able to protect your children is terrifying to me. And in a strange way, it was an avenue I haven't explored before. Even though it intimidated me to go that deeply into someone who I understood who she was and why she feels certain things so deeply. It's probably the most personal part I've played."

A Quiet Place is Krasinski's third film as a director, but nothing in his previous two outings would suggest he'd prove so adept at creating tension. Krasinski says he wasn't even a fan of horror movies before he took the job.

"I was terrified of horror movies and I very rarely watched them, because I was scared," says Krasinski. "I connected to this family. I didn't know how to do a scary movie, but I did know how to write a story about a family trying to protect their kids because I was in that moment. We had just had our second daughter, and I was still in this world of feeling like a new parent. "

Film Still from A QUIET PLACE (2018) Emily Blunt A family lives an isolated existence in utter silence, for fear of an unknown threat that follows and attacks at any sound.
Film Still from A QUIET PLACE (2018) Emily Blunt A family lives an isolated existence in utter silence, for fear of an unknown threat that follows and attacks at any sound.

Krasinski says that taking on the task of co-writing and directing a horror lead to him re-evaluating the genre.

"As soon as I took on the role I watched every horror movie under the sun and what I learned really quickly, if I'm honest, is how ignorant I was. I think there was probably a time where horror movies were more like B-movies, and now you have Get Out, you have The Babadook, you have The Witch, some of the best movies out there, cinematically, storytelling-wise. So now I'm a huge fan because they are the best stories going right now."

Something else he learned making A Quiet Place: just how talented Blunt is.

"I've never looked at my wife the same now because now because now I know what sort of crazy magic she can conjure. Whereas before I was just like 'Oh my God you were so good in Sicario!' And we would go home. Now I can actually look at her and say I know the detail that you put into that, the hard work you put into that decision. It's an amazing thing."

LOWDOWN:
Who: Emily Blunt and John Krasinski
What: A Quiet Place
When: In cinemas now