Sam Claflin was homesick on the Fiji set of Adrift. His wife, Laura Haddock, and their 2-year-old son Pip, were more than 10,000 miles away in London and they couldn’t visit.
“My wife was pregnant at the time and Zika virus is in Fiji. It’s not a huge outbreak, but still you don’t want to risk it,” Claflin, 31, exclusively told Us Weekly at the L.A. premiere of his romance drama on Wednesday, May 23. “So my wife and little boy couldn’t come out to Fiji. I had three months on my own.”
The Zika virus is transmitted primarily by Aedes mosquitoes. It can cause severe birth defects such as microcephaly, a condition in which babies are born with unusually small heads and underdeveloped brain.
Though the Hunger Games star missed Haddock, 31, and Pip, he created a family on set. “Everyone was away from their homes and families. There was an immediate bond and connection because we were all suffering together. We enjoyed our time as best we could,” Claflin told Us. “I definitely rang home though and spoke to my family as much as I could, on a daily basis!”
Claflin formed a special friendship with costar Shailene Woodley. In the film, which is based on a true story, Claflin and the 26-year-old play a couple who are lost at sea after getting stuck in a category five hurricane.
“She and I really hit it off from the beginning. There was no trying to get along. The chemistry was there for nothing,” he raved. “She’s someone I genuinely care about, someone who I’m excited about. She’s so young, and yet, has so much going for her.”
Claflin added that Woodley was the perfect shipmate.
“She saw me throwing up. I saw her throwing up,” he cracked to Us. “The ice was broken quite quickly in the best way possible.”
Meanwhile, Claflin and Haddock welcomed a healthy baby girl in February.
With reporting by Nicholas White.