NEW YORK -- The stars of "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" know that the premise of their film is outrageous. It's a joke that would last for 30 seconds... if they hadn't played it out so seriously.

"It's ridiculous. We know. That's it. We were not only directed to play it straight, it only works if it's played straight," Abe Lincoln actor Benjamin Walker told HitFix in our recent interview.

Aside from what his cohort Anthony Mackie -- who plays Lincoln's right-hand-man Will in the film -- calls "complex characters," there's also complicated choreography and fight sequences. The actors alluded to some hijinks with Lincoln's oft-used rubber axe, which logged "a lot of screen time."

As for the physical demands from the actors, director Timur Bekmambetov "was insistent that it be something new and something uniquely lincoln. So it became this kind of simultaneously graceful and violent act... he was known for using an axe. He was the Railsplitter candidate."

Check out what else the actors had to say on their Civil War time zone.