Denzel Washington attends Closing Night Gala Presentation Of “Flight” during the 50th New York Film Festival at Alice Tully Hall on October 14, 2012 in New York City. (October 13, 2012)

*Denzel Washington lands in theaters Nov. 2 with his latest film “Flight,” a disturbing story that follows the investigation of a pilot’s miraculous emergency landing.

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The actor plays Captain “Whip” Whitaker, who manages to save nearly every soul on board with his skill and calm under pressure. However, a probe of his heroics leads to the discovery of alcohol in his system during the flight – a felony that could get him life in prison.

“I read a lot of scripts. And first of all, you felt like you read it in 14 minutes because you’re turning the page so fast you can’t wait to see what’s gonna happen,” says Washington. “This was one of those scripts. I had to have it. I had to be a part of it.”

Don Cheadle (R) and Denzel Washington in a scene from “Flight”

“Flight” marks the return of director Robert Zemeckis to live action – his first since 2000’s “Cast Away” and “What Lies Beneath.” Also, Don Cheadle reteams with Denzel, his “Devil in a Blue Dress” co-star, as Whitaker’s attorney Hugh Lang. John Goodman, Brian Geraghty, James Badge Dale, Melissa Leo, Kelly Reilly, Garcelle Beauvais, Tamara Tunie and Nadine Velasquez round out the cast.

But the real star of the film, according to Washington, was screenwriter John Gatins. Speaking at a press conference on Saturday in Los Angeles, Washington said of the film’s intensity: “It was on the page, the guts, the pain, the tears – it’s like a Eugene O’Neill play, the tears were on the page.”

Below, Washington says he can tell within the first three days of a movie shoot if production will be a fun ride like “Flight,” or a long slog.

Watch three new scenes from the film below.