« WTF with Marc Maron Podcast

Episode 992 - Yorgos Lanthimos

2019-02-06 | 🔗
Yorgos Lanthimos makes films that pose a lot of questions and Marc wants answers. But it turns out the question Yorgos finds the least interesting is “Why?” Perhaps his disinterest in simple answers stems from the fact that he was on his own at the age of seventeen, or maybe from his time spent directing hundreds of Greek television commercials, or maybe just from watching movies and being struck by broken conventions. Yorgos talks with Marc about all of his films, from The Favourite to The Lobster to Dogtooth, and his satisfaction that there are no easy answers. This episode is sponsored by Stamps.com and Carnival Cruise Line.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
All right. Let's do this, how are you what the fucker is, what the fuck buddies, what the fucking years what's happening on mark mariners is my podcast how's it going your goes land, the most, the director of the favourite is on the show today I dunno if you've seen his other movies, but I've watched all of them. Yeah I've watched all of them alps, dog too The killing of a sacred deer, the lobster this one, the favorite I think that's almost all of them. There are some other ones, some short films I didn't watch but go sync, your brain into that stuff. Huh yeah go sink your teeth,
your brain teeth into dog to see what that does to your to your head. Try that anyway, I had some genes and it's never turns out the way. I think it's gonna turn out but anyways. Why am I say? That's too with the anyways he's here. But first, let's walk. this experience. I look, I'm not a diva, I'm not a prima donna. I'm not a high maintenance dude on set when I act but the other day out into the night to shoot glow by night. I mean I got Five in the morning for a six fifteen call. Fifteen call we bring, will try, bag with what I need in it to my trailer I can function during the day. I need dental floss and toothbrush. Any toothpaste I need a mouthwash, I'm just
I've gotten weird with that, I just after lunch. You know when I get there. I just tried to know, take care of stuff. You know you prepare, what you do, but you gotta look you bring. You got some things make you feel at home when you're not at home summer rituals them you need to do in order to keep your brain. In canada grounded Obviously one of those is in that bag? Is my nicotine lozenges, now that we're in the throes of addiction to these fucking things. I need hitting the wall again. How many times folks. Few people had been with me a long time. How many times is this? So it's six hundred and fifty in the morning and I'm driving and I'm almost to set, and I realize I don't got my back. I don't got my stuff. I don't got my my goods, I don't got my my goldjuice Am I my drug and that way of like don't fuck now
am I going to function. I know, what's going to happen to me in about two hours, maybe three hours, I'm going you become an asshole? going to become an irritable fuck. I'm. Become on deal on. This is a long shoot day now, what talking about meth we're not talking about coke, not talking about dope not even talking about weed. yeah there's, no real challenge to getting nicotine lozenges once in law greens opened, but that moment of panic? I was just like my brain just started spinning I gotta deal with this. And I got out of my car, it's still dark out. I went up to the. a d- and I said, look man. I didn't I my nicotine and undeniably, I'm gonna be an asshole there when the car, kids about seven thirty, I'm going to turn into a dick, so We gotta get on this she's like no problem and I'm like really I'd. Never ask people
but I'm not like you know. I don't the rider, that's complicated. You know usually it's like a veggies and some homeless and almonds backstage so I don't never, I never! Really. I don't want ever. I don't like being a problem to people Well, what do we do? She goes off. Transfer I'll go, get em, transpo the transportation guys they got their their ears to the ground. They're got their foot on the pedal these dudes, teamsters and I'm like. Okay while and I go to my trailer- and I gap. Walgreens is one that opens very caused by six. Thirty am like this going to be I'm going to nail this thing. Man am I got a right to set the transfer guy says rada were sent in someone over the wagons. Am I do you know? You know he's like. I do know I could not really this guy, like don't worry about it right now. I appreciate that guy. I need that shit. She is like yeah. I know I Would you like to need that shit? No, my great They just. I just got that feeling that, like
can I'm not yeah, I'm not high maintenance, but I got that feeling right. He said no you're not and I'm like wow what a view. What is it Where are the transportation guy stories What are they added deal with whatever? What are they had to drive into the night to get you to accommodate? some more demanding celebrities. Yeah there's wisdom. Their ninety really put it together in really realized, I'm in my own world but you'll before we started, shooting night a box and nicotine I had a bottle of mouthwash, I had a fucking toothbrush and that was all I needed. That's my diva kit, nicotine lozenges. Some blue listerine, a toothbrush and some floss picks ha I'm. I am fucking out of control out fuckin control your goes lance. The most greek fella great director
has a vision, it's daunting! Here's the here's, the deal, when I knew I was going to interview him. I was excited that he had a relatively small filmography, ample movies right there was a. well that were great idea of there's a couple short film and saw another thing, eco directed by its like it really started with dog tooth and- and then there is it in the next room, was called alps and then the lobster and then the king, the sacred dear and then the favourite he's around. he's a relatively young fella. When I had seen the favourite after I too, lobster. I always assume these guys who do movies that are, challenging and in disturbing and cryptic is out of that the word I want to use a surreal of sir but dad, but the aggressive that day possess, dark wisdom. If you listen to my fault, listen. I kind him
surprise. I thought tat I was going to be a dark. Wiser turns out, he said: do fall from the valley whose dad was goofball too personality in ohio. I think, if I remember correctly best friends, TIM Conway. So I always I still assume that, like I'm going to get to the bottom of what the fuck, these movies mean because I had that experience. I am like I say I watch dog tooth. I watched it in and fifty minutes into MIKE what's happening an hour in my colleague fuck what is going on this curbing it was hitting me. I was getting punched around. My brain was having experience, that was fucking with it I can put it together. Really I mean night. I seek meaning I went when something is hard to understand. That means she time. I watch a film. I don't understand, or that seems to be layered, I never blame the film when I
When I don't understand? I never dismiss. I never say like what that was fucked up, who needs a door that movie er yeah, that that that was terrible. No, My first reaction is like I'm a fucking idiot. Why am I not smart enough for this? How come I can't contextual? Is I fucking film. I don't know what's going on and I lose sense with with art I forget what artist supposed to do and I'm I'm the painter and I can I get them but I never heard more put more succinctly. It was. It was interesting because it's all just happened. I liked the movies I liked alps like dogtooth. I, like them, violent lee of certain of its violent of absurd ism. Yeah alps is a proof you guys know the lobster killing a sacred deer, heavy man, What you realize with your ghost is that there is a vision that he does
everything very intentionally and if you watch the favourite its material, in how it, sir directed in how it set in Yo. You can see that he gets exactly what he wants out of his framing and out of the way he shoots and he's got a vision that he holds got all the movies so he means it and great at it any honors its vision. I saw that so I felt like he needed to answer for something you know and I've had this experience. Throughout my life, when I was younger with films like I would watch yeah some of the great surrealist who had premier We boon well, you know c mon. Shannon delude were lodged door, even tristan, which was a later one, that they had a story, but I would still like what the fuck, happening. What am I missing? Something I'm studying this stuff in, even with the teacher explaining it I'm, and why am I not getting it read by Antonio di. It's like what what am I a key, it's stunning to look at, but what am I would what
well, what am I not getting rich the game grand illusion, the renoir movies are my eye. That world, it's dropping off on me what you know what dryers Jonah work. I or how long are we going to look at this This is heavy man. This woman is in the heavy What's happening for indeed even the easy ones juliet of the spirits or mike I'm missing something away her, but but like what it is there are intentions, you're not going yeah as you'll see you may not get them from the person that makes it their intentions honoring their vision right if it's like. I don't know what this means, the image. I want the image I see this I their people to see it. It doesn't who care its tethered to a story and the thing kind of blue my mind it and it wasn't if the actual performed
I went to an event all right, I'll I'll I'll get fancy with the I'll drop some names. I went to a sort of a toast, a reception for the steppenwolf theatre that was hosted by William friedkin bill Friedman his wife, sherry lansing, William friedkin, the director of the sorcerer french connection exorcist, and to have she watches movies, but it was honoring step woven, let's tracy letts, whose who's might my buddy right now. I don't mean that it's conditional, I mean we're. We seem to be becoming friends, so I was invited to this thing and the step. people. There was a about networking here in l, they're going to do a several plays at taper, as I told you before, Tracy play when divest vista is now to mark taper it's great. I reckon did again. The cast air low remit, was are some the original members of well for there and new members, the artistic director, but they were they wanted.
Presence in our debate. This is all besides with his just me, telling you that I was at a fancy event, but bill friedkin talking about? You know what theater does and also and his wife sherry lansing about when you go, a play. it changes your life. It did you, you leave a changed person, you you're talking about it, you're thinking about things differently, your seat, something differently. For the first time, the play itself has an effect and that's what the archer do that Should change your life in that you can explain that all the time I mean you can see narrative films and you, like you, remember bits and pieces, but sometimes ship goes deeper and aid and its it's provocative in a way that you may not understand, but you do feel changed. and that was sort of a good deal, a good thing for me to hear, because sometimes- I don't always know I I I know I have said that your painting should should who, in the brain in your brain, should stay punched and that's a sin
her thing, but even be one talk to your goes, which wasn't that long ago I was still in for answers and I kinda knew that day. It doesn't matter. If the answers are there you're going to have the experience you're going to have with these movies whether you think you won, your standard or not. It's going. stay with you. It might have impact. You might not even understand unaware, that might not even be apparent or become apparent to you, but you feel it. So I'm a changed man, I don't need the answers anymore, but try to get him? I try to get so now. your ghosts, the favorite is the movie that is nominated for ten academy awards, including best director for my guest I was looking for answers and what ended up happening is we had a nice conversation and I realized that answers, aren't necessarily important. conversation is this. Is me, I came to your goes landowners
and the. How often do you come here? I lately I've been coming a lot because of the promotion of films and all that yeah you. I guess I like it, I I started liking it yeah winter. When I first came here was like what is this place, I'm in where he wears were they old buildings, where, when was this built? What oh really first reactions. Architecture is yeah architecture worthier, whereas the centre of this town outweighs the centre were, which is a neighborhood witches residential arise where what's going on them, and I couldn't figure they out and then I started to like it. I like, like I careless the my and I people boy the area, you don't know, neighbourhood threat. It's almost like this is the office of so and sounds happily yet, no better, and yet I really started like
you know and when you know some people and you get to proper places, the assay you know, then you realize different things and I I quiet you know yeah, I'm I've warmed, and now you're like a year, you're somewhat celebrated. I would imagine this is like that. I managed to you're here for that one year for the globes yeah, here for the globes and whatever is around it. He made you so you really going through. I mean. I know that you ve gotten some fanfare, but there's something about how he would fanfare it's a little different. Isn't it it is kind of different. It's you actually made me will, though, you're, not just a guy with a foreign film nomination, exactly yeah, but it's like that everywhere I mean like in france. You know people are like about french films right and in europe, you're it's about cannes and venice yeah, and so it's it's all these little world yeah that have their own rules and the different value in different places like a menai, huge foreign film,
I don't keep up as much as I should. I can't keep up with anything really and we've seen the lobster a couple of years ago, and then I watched the favorite in a theater, which was good. I'm glad I saw it in a theater, not the screener and then the and then I had. I went back and I watched a dog and then I watch alps? I've seen all of them, and I gotta be honest. It took me, it took me about four days to get through dog that I had to. I had to take a couple of breaks yeah because, like you know- and I dunno if it's a european sensibility or greek sensibility or just your sensibility, I've grown to believe that it's your sensibility but I have to approach the movies a little differently, because there are so many things I don't understand and then in an layered on top of that, just your particular vision.
is somewhat difficult to understand outside of it being greek, like the first link, they sent me for dogtooth enough subtitles and I'm like this is not gonna work. I'm not gonna be able to do translated, yeah, do it, but it, but so were. Like. I told me, I've never really talked to anybody from greece. and I don't know much about its or what, how did you come up over there? What was there? What was your childhood like in terms of like? Where did you where you like? Would your folks do like how Is greece like yeah? Well, that's big. What is your eyes, but you for no over me. I might add, my parents, my father, it was a actively known basketball player really, and you know we're good in basketball in greece. I don't see. I know that. How would I know that, while you
maybe you know because we beat even the u s said why picks were like bad good at some point, four, that's interesting, cassio limping, I think when you're in europe is, I guess it's a pretty big deal for everybody by, but it's I mean, I think when you live in a smaller country, yet america, so fuckin big you can just sort of like you know you of texas is its own country. That's but I think with like greece, like you know, you know the national basketball team, I dunno the national basketball team, so he was a basketball player. He was yeah and of course, that was back in the seventies, so it wasn't so. professional, wasn't so a brain, so he was, but he was well known and does it was he tat he was in his? a little bit, not not not with today's standards. Different right one ninety two say centimetres.
guess I'm I'm metric also you'd have to translate that again cause. I have a lot of cultural differences figure it out as soon as you say, centimeters I'm like very short man. Just as tall as this glass, I would imagine you know he's like six feet, like whatever yeah he's a pro ballplayer. That was your childhood. You grew up with a pro basketball player. He is retired by the time you remember well, actually they were separated with my mother's since I was very young, so I I just got to see him now and then and I yeah so I grew up with my mother yeah. I do If you are the died, when I was seven my I know no brother your sister you're it so I met in your mom passed away when you're seventeen yeah so basically from then on. I just had to figure it out on my own, and they like one, was the like. What were you? When did you start getting interest in in white weren't. You start with theatre now
I always wanted to do film yeah, but I couldn't really admit that in greece cause, you don't know about greek cinema guests in that's right because There's not a lot of it that it has a lot of it. I mean that the last few years, there's more younger people are making films there it wasn't like a proper that was never a proper industry. I was not. There is no structure there. I know a proper education, such If we are a young boy in greece to go like I'm going to be making films, the apple would look at you like you're, crazy right. Well, what did you study early? So I I got into the university to study, marketing and finance to which I am never want to have anything to do with so I dropped out of that. I did play a little bit: basketball myself until was one thousand seven hundred and eighteen debris good at it. Was it genetic? was ok, I think.
One of the reasons, probably that I didn't you know when, through with it, is that I felt that I'd never be as good as my father kind of thing, or was your father. No nationally I mean was he like the do people come up to you when I was young like he was like? Are you related to you know Adani's, which is my father's name, so I was like yeah he's my father. Now the other way around is he around still he's around the idea you get along with him? Oh, I see him every now and then I mean we never had a very close relationship clear, but I would see him over the years every now and then the ideal like when that given after your mother passed away, you didn't order, no actually have. No. That was now, I guess, one of the reasons that you know we didn't see each other so much that he didn't want
have the responsibility of have you yeah. Have me? Oh this kid now, seventeen exactly the lady That was, you know. It was fine in enable me to do things that I I don't know if I would have done a if I was brought up in a different way and So if you know like I said, I dropped out from getting to university university, and I I I went to this, the only private little private film school that we have inside of its called stavrakos someone's name louis. You know no equipment yet If the teachers haven't done, many films were quite a few years, but I but I got to meet people there that are also interested in making film yeah I do, but but The goal was the the
idea was that I was going to study film in order to start making commercials, because that seemed like a proper job. Practical yeah like I would that there is such a thing. People do it and there's there was? boom in the nineties into two thousand, in greece, so glad that felt like a job. I never thought that I was actually going to be making films, but when you were a kid like where, where did you gravitate towards films, I mean? Was it something that you know you are interested in early on? Are you what what created the the via the notion yeah I was but but, as I said it was, it was never a tangible that I will actually make films properly. We would for fun? You know with friend, nick you know silly things in them, Yeah then it was like what did I do something which is related to it that I'll get the the education I out around rounded, and maybe one day I'll make a film, but for the being I'll, get there
a lot knowledge in order to do commercials or tea I or whatever you want your mom do as it was employing a store that sold up appliances, I an electric appliances. So no there is she wasn't in a creative driven person. I m really grow up with it. You just know really system and it came out of nowhere near hatches, decided. So when did you start? How did you start to sort of educate yourself? you know in terms of like I guess it. You said there was no real greek film industry, but I mean must What were you primarily watching? European films are american films, all of it now I have three. I started pretty straightforward. Like you know, I grew up with the jaws and
in raiders of the lost ark and the foot lose and flashdance, and you know that all the big ones yeah, oh man, yeah. What more the? What more do you need? Exact? There's, the four you're all set. That's it! You got your dancing, you got your scary. Actually, you've got your swashbuckling yeah. sam and then you know, I also watched the the films later on when I started studying film- and I you know- I go to know about filmmakers and watched a lot of films of those, let's go through that because, like cause? I you know I study film and you know I am a relatively smart guy. And you know I found I was talking about. I was actually talking about watching your movie alps, I was doing comedy last night,
I know, because I want to hear that because what I said was like is I I go to the club late to do a spot and I've been home. I watched I watched about half of it and I said yeah. I had to come out yeah, I was at home watching a movie I didn't understand earlier, and I had to take myself away from that and the the observation I made is when I can't quite grasp something. I I never blame the the art like I like, I watch it and I'm like, and I finish it and I'm like I watched the whole thing. I tried. I'm not sure I got it and if I didn't it, I'm the asshole- and it was my very generous, but but you you did that about your films is at the the everything is intentional. This is not some sort of haphazard. You know you make your making very specific choices. from scene to scene in dialogue- and you know I understand that there's absurdism at play.
They're all loaded up, and they all have an effect. So it's not like you know, he didn't know what he was doing. He is just winging it. You know you, you sat there with a piece of paper and made decisions, yeah and throughout the process you know in an editing room when you were filming yeah, you you make decisions, but who was people because, like I, I just wonder you and not that I have a narrative craving necessarily you know but like in order to sort of pay attention have the effect of your movies, like I noticed today, like I finish watching the alps and, like I became very hyper aware of everything I was doing when I wasn't watching movies movie, like the tone the film somehow in used my life. You know I m really became like the glass. Is it a glass like a fact, but but where is that start for you? I mean what was the like when did commercials. What what what were the first moments where you start to realize the power of creating or evoking it's not
confusion, but buddy a tone, you know what I mean. I guess it happens real first of all, by watching films and in a realizing all the different effects they can have or who are your guys and what was the first kind of mind blowing moment when you were white in film and you're like oh? This is, I guess, coffee, was one of the first filmmakers that I got to learn film school that I didn't know anything about that in a film history class yeah. So we learned about it and then there's a so you know during summer in greece there's a lot of open air cinemas. I mean there are not as many anymore yeah I do, but there are beautiful open cinemas in various neighborhoods, where you can. You know we have a little table and you eat something at or outside iran, by apartment buildings here and you watch films, so they
Do you like retrospectives say I would watch him films and then John cassavetes. Was more than about our caskey, specifically that that you found a sort of engaging well. It was just for the very first time seeing like a difficult. It was like a dip completely different medium. Discovering like something new, a vision like how you know. How can images affect you in a different way? Right doesn't have to be ass narrative and your how poetic it can be and how you can lose yourself it right engage but with your own personality, there's a lot of openness. It like you, can bring your own stuff in yet and the see things understand things in maybe in a different way to how the person next to use yeah
in the same thing. At the same time, right now, everything's not explained yeah exactly the yeah, they the use of sound and image, and it was very- it was very different from Me- and I was you know, and then you know like watching right after that at a john cassavetes film, which is very different, stylistically better for me at the in a weird way it has a very similar effect. I do not really friend through a different route. It's more. It's it's human driven space tarkovsky movies I've seen your it's a lot of cinematic space, but with cassavetes earth there's something heightened, but it is very engaged with people yeah, but though the fact that its hide and also takes it too, different you and yet I feels kind of
more realistic, ate a kind of transcends that in the end you enter a different space. Again, There is also that feeling like these people were talking, and the context seems familiar to me, but I don't know what the fuck is happening with. What's going on with these people, that's a good feeling, I guess, if I enjoy. You know watching films like that, I guess what I'm trying to do is you know, create films like the ones that I to see because you watch movies constantly. I watch a lot of movies. I am not like an obsessed, though yak a film buff or anything, but I I do I I kind of I and to watch the same films over and over again, I feel safe, yeah, yeah they're, familiar they're like friends, yeah so and yeah yeah I'd rather watch something that I really like then, what's awake, which
When did you watch him over and over like every time it? So I like sometimes I'll just be watching tv or cable in one common and like them I mean I don't the addendum matter. Word starts. I just watch casino again the other day is that I've seen that, like quite a few great, it's a great film- watch out. How, like I found that, as I get older, I'm not able to watch the head in the vice seen as much as like I used to be able to sensitive a little bit. Yeah yeah, it's weird. I just feel like I dunno. If I need this, I know I know, what's going to happen They were the weird thing with me like how much affected that can by those kind of things being so much you know on the inside and seeing how these things are created, even though you know how it works. You know how it works. The difficult thing is for me to be affected by this there and that's when I know that
Film really grabbed me, because I forget about the weights may day, I'm united sitting a guy. I know how to I understand that shot. I used and has actually when, when you were you, when you are able to do that and be someone that is actually making film that's like very strong, right. Now I am so some of the movies you watch on repeat like. I want some me close young cho films. Every time before I heavier it's. In full media, like read in the white: oh yeah, I don't haven't seen those in the round. Yeah yeah yeah. Those are great. They're they're, pretty amazing, it's it's more about being inspired by people who made things. You know that that change, cinnamon away. Just like look look what they did in go on something like a way It gives you pray. It inspires you to to to push the envelope yeah
that's a very skilled. I have see husbands all the time, the air, roar or women under the influence that haven't these crazy. I mean, like I've watched that a few times and Jeanne around this is like a bath the main issue that people say that but a lot of things with she really is that he's kind of them, She singular, and that's for sure, and you gotta use, you tend to use actors more than once too. You seem to lock into people, but what was the first and what was the? What commercials did you do ooh I've done hundreds of farmers rings green commercials of greek commercials. started really low, it's doing like there's! No, no, no! Even worse weight.
like, I started, which always I was very like a star in really young. I started on the site I will out, while I was in the second year film school so like I was twenty years old reacting and I started doing commercials really cheap there during that time there was a lot of gifts with newspapers near they would gift. The maker or the newspaper later, you would buy the newspaper with the subscription. You get a coffee, yeah I'll, get a coffee maker, and so would do the the commercial for the coffee maker and then use the so things like that. I started with things like that and then you know I moved up the ladder and there is a lot of commercial for banks- and you know mobile phone companies and networks but there were at the time like, like I said, for late nineties and two thousand up two thousand and nine, where the crisis hit greece, I was, it was in
same that I would do like to three commercials a week, There was a lot of work I learned a lot. You know, technically speaking, I made friends that we ended up making together. They, they kind of enabled me to because, as I said, there was no structure, there's no financing in greece to make films a they kind of enable me to go. You know we ask I we can. You know, get the camera and a couple of actors and go and make a film as how I made my first film key nasa, which you are. Is that a dream? It's a feature film, yeah and do you know we were very technically proficient and you and your crew yeah you we didn't need a much we, you know we didn't, need lights or make up or anything we're just shooting video, mostly no film. While I did a couple of films digitally, but I didn't enjoy the experience digital yeah, so I went back to film and you do you have brilliance with theater
I've made like three or four plays in greece that you've written no, no direct. I directed I and That was a good experience for me too, in order to learn how to work with actors, but did you did you have any specific training in that? No eight and have happened. Did you read a book? bad I read a play the first time and was they offered me to do a play? There was a very interesting kind of expert. I wasn't where mental theatre really as I just more of gardener theatre in a nap in athens and see director of the theatre- Bring me to do a play and I went like I read the play. It was by a greek writer and I liked It- and I went like why not and I I tried it and I enjoy the experience with the experience of working with the actors
and I learned a lot thing about theater in greece of you, you have a lot of time. You have. You can have like two three months for her: before you use the asked the play. which is not common. From what I learned afterwards so that I learned a lot about working with actors and working with, like I imagined lighting people and nations, and here we are, but that I already knew a lot about that from commercials too. There were years of doing that, and then I I kind of did play every you know to three years, but indiana was never really taken, by the final results yeah. I don't. I don't really like her as much now, but I I enjoyed the process. What is
that? Is that the the the the temporary nature of it? It's very ephemeral yeah. You can't really have a lot of control over it. Yeah yeah, it changes every night That's the interested, the interesting part for the actors or whose for someone, is it more than once, but you feel kind of plus your you know. Whenever I went to see the performance like, I was in a car and go like what are you doing? That's not what we it's not supposed to happen. You know we can manage and control it. So yeah, I kind of gave up on that, and I focused more on films because it makes sense. Like you know, some people, that's the part they love about theater I yeah I do understand and then other people, it's like what is happening, the damn actors, so the first film. I wish I'd seen that one so dogtooth was the second one dog. The second room, but everybody thinks is the first one, because the first one was
obscure was rarely, do you have a copy of it? I do have a well give it to you and I don't think you're going to I love that bit that you do. I don't have enough time. I dunno how much time do I have to live. So I don't think it's a film that you're going to spend time take the time you know like I. I really do. I do take the time, but sometimes I don't I'm not exactly. wish sure like I I I like. I think that the idea was talking about last night, as I get intimidated by things where, where I think like to somebody have the laser emmanuel that will enable me to understand, like I, I was working through watching all the movies and then getting to the favorite, which you didn't write right, which is big difference. You know just try to find the the key to do. Do what you're doing what he did. What's really interesting is when you go, I got I m d b and they days
give you that the line of what the movies sister like it's fucking hilarious, like you, look at the one for dog tooth, it's like over protective parents, don't let them! You know like this. One line to describe at movie, or with without it's like a group of people create a business people grieve by posing, That's all you got is not enough. the first movie about. I guess, that's how hard isn't it kind of is I mean, physically speaking, it was about three people living in the resort town outside of athens. That was dying and it was portraits of these people in there what kind of reenacting crimes that happen in the air in the area yeah there was a cop in a maid in a hotel and a foot go for that worry enacting crimes and in support of these three people above also the though the place is quite porn as well? It sir,
It's an old resort town outside thence where they built a noise oil refinery next to it near so it kind of started dying people had a house. summer houses in hotels and they kind of, no control over their oral fact arise. So we kind of became a little bit deserted all those hotels here and those houses. So it's in africa fast. and here it became as an evolving. I first you wrote the story and I was emerging those people and then I was looking for a place to do it, and I I do by this place and I saw this hotel that hotel from the seventies and it seemed kind of anti on the beach and I went in with my assistant director at the time we were going around looking for places.
and we walk into an empty hotel and were trying to find some one, and there was no one there. It was open. Now it was open, yeah was open, but there was no one there. No in the reception we started walking around restaurant, known they're here at some point. We see a guy and go like. oh hi, where you know we're looking for locations we to make a film and we asked him so when, when do you open- and you know which are the busiest times for you and he goes like were open and there were full. And we go back Ok, maybe it in their stand, like none army like when, when one is the live, their hotel full and you have a lot of bookings and people going around, he says right now, we're completely full theirs, when and then we're gonna go with you and there was no one there and there we we with this thought that he was, crazy, but then, after time he explained to us
that all the workers that work in the oil refinery of refinery that the a lot of them are brought from thailand. I think I err are actually actually live there, so they use these. This old resort hotel with a swimming pool that was empty and dirty just to have that. That's two houses. You know workers from from thailand. I think it's a were you looking actually, so you can figure out when you could shoot there? Yes, oh, it was like aids, it's an empty hotel. Why can we should hear so yeah, so we incorporated that in the film visually. At some point I gave a time the workers they come back from work here with vans and they You know just hang out there and why guess question, though, with that is- and I don't want you to misunderstand I, like your movie- that's ok, you know no serious, I get you, I find them fascinating in there and I was moved by them, but, like I have to you know I again to the habit of what straight narrative movies yeah,
it. You know and like you know, I watched you get guitar films to boom. Well, films, I I you know, I studied film history and I and I liked those movies, but you watch different way in eight, you, u big, but but your expectations are still there. So when you have a brain, that's always like looking for morsels of narrative yeah will somehow you Then you realize that part of what you're doing is is undercutting that and everything becomes earned in a different way right, so like just as an example. When you talk about the conception of that first film, what's the title of it again commit the so you have this. You have the scene where you have these three characters in this deserted resort, town, reacting crimes that happened in the area. Now that something that that every occurs through at least to your movies, where you have people reenacting, things for one reason or another I mean certainly in dogtooth, definitely in the alps. So what would I what what is what what? What is the
I love that idea. Why is that fascinating to you? that's an interesting question that I've never thought about, I I don't know I guess it's there's something about What draws us in all those spectacles, are like theater and yet like you know, watching people. reenact. You know life in a certain way moments of it or situations, damn, how can now play around with that to expose more things and maybe even truer things by what goes on in those kind of interaction right in the events by you know, obsessing on a detail of something that happened may be. the way you do things or the way you say things
I dunno, I'm I'm winging it right now cause I haven't really. I I don't really like to talk about this, not not necessarily talk about, but think about it too much and intellectual lies it and analyze. It is a lie, is a lot of it is instinctive. You know what drew sure the but I, but I think, the that that that it was my experience because it like. I just realized that new you do it in the lobsters. Well, I mean there as you know, there's there's improvised and sort of a process of of of complex sign language and then there is enough, but but I noticed that in all the movies that you have these emotional interactions and you realize that the dialogue is not matching the At the moment, then that is obviously intentional, but what you do get is you realize how it kind of expound language itself in terms of like you, how important is it really in even in our real life.
what we know. What's really being said, does it have anything to do with? What's going on in this moment? It- depends in different individuation. Sometimes it matters sometimes done it doesn't and in that movie. So how was it received in which one the first movie First was received as a very difficult, obscure, wasn't released. Property was only a few years released in the uk on dvd, but you know it's. It's been you know, since the other films became a little bit known, it's been shown around. They showed it at tate, modern at some point and oh yeah, so that will that's this disease has a new life. That's interesting that world right, so that world, like you, know it's at the tail modern. Would that that new museum that is great, that space is great. Isn't it do you? in there and a sort of like holy shit. I can't I,
The time I go to london, that's one of the- and I don't go that often, but I always go there almost entirely for the building itself, yet isn't an incredible space, but that's sort of the world that you seem to be that you might occupy a bit. Is that you know your your films will be shown at museums to to you that there is a sort of art to it. That is not flashdance dance It is not the rather limited flashed ends in it. in the recognizing dog to the flashdance reference with it they'd. I don't if I know that movie that well, which which part others Instead, she does six completely ripped from flash, then, when she's dancing by herself in front of her family. Here, that's the choreography that into tablet Well, let me ask you then so without you over intellectual, rising and expecting too much, I know it's hard to explain a poetry or impulse, but you do commit to it, and I and I guess when unlike theatre, you know which you are
aids is that you don't have control of written that someone missed our cue or does it that the line- not in the way the you'd rehearsed it sort of upsetting, or at least is aggravating, but when you watch your films, which you spend a lot of time within making them, do you find do you get that satisfaction of resolution? Do you do you know what is the effect for you once you've completed? No, no! No, well. First of all, after have completed completed I don't watch them anymore unless you know, maybe ten years later, like, for instance, I did watch a little bit of my first film camera when it was shown the taped. I just checked the print yeah, so I like ten minutes of it, and I like so some good things in it. I bought a there. Remember net em, you know mostly psych You know this thing that you've tried to yeah, you know create
then hide in this. It is in all that, when wrong in your trying to fool people into believing that you know it's a perfect objects that this means My question is this: how you answered that question before is that you know when you do have a few? where you know you, you know you doing a three act, you know story right, and you know you refine that script, because you have a story to follow right. I imagine a lot of the sea faction or or a lot of the challenges is, is: does the story land right now, so in in in the way you answer that question before it seems to me that you know you taking risks, committing to situations and de as that you don't really know exactly where they're coming from, but they they are poor, It can visually provocative enough for you to follow through with them. I guess I question is, when you finish:
thing does some of that stuff? Do you feel like you? resolved. The ammunition is, is the feeling one of of resolution because you're not really you not thinking, terms of story necessarily idiot I'm saying yeah is never a complete. Philly railing. That's the thing right. I have made this thing. I certain intentions- I you know I started being confident when I we wrote a screenplay, and I feel that You know solidarity and unity, let's go and make area hopeful, it's gonna, be amazing and then on the way here things, Well, so far, then you know you have to deal with a lot of practicalities and it becomes this other thing and it always it's always like that, and that's the nice thing about cinema, where you have a screen they was a blueprint and then you know you end up making something quite different, because it's tone thing and it has a life of its own here. So you have to accept that and I do but there in within that there's all these other things. You know that
haven't worked well right right. Have you hopefully somehow disguise for other people that work we view during the experience of what are they going to say to you it's like the heavy. This is something that no one can say to you about any of the eu, the films that european directed is sort of. Like you know, I don't think that that story, what plot worked, but it's it's not about that. I mean it's as, as you said before, it could be. You entered in it through a different. you know yet space base, or so to hold space is the job. yeah hold us what you know and to affect people right. You know in a certain way. I maybe feed if it doesn't hold together. Well, you don't affect people in whatever way. It is that you want a fact them. I get not about rigidly rolling certain. We s allowed narrative story area, its of its general feel about film atomic. If you manage that right, you hope that people will you know
I buy into it, and but I icons you know I can be so objective in and and have the distance to by myself. So it's always about you know doing the best that you could for for each film according to what you had in mind and what you are trying to achieve here, and then just you know, give it to people and then they have their own reaction, and then you just hope? Oh how I serve is like even during the editing process, It's I I think of you, know the new stuff. start writing and thinking of is hoping that it's going to be better. it's in that to me like okay, so with the first film with you, you have the resort and you have the crimes and you have the reactions you know as a way to enter the the the the people that you've chosen
so would dogge tooth. You know what was first idea with that what's distance, arms of like I'm gonna, sit down. I got this idea near. The idea was how much you can influence people's perception about the world the alleged occasion and everyday life right at the world that you presented to someone. It could be so extreme. The idea that someone could have about the world in a certain way. And how are you know our families, the you know, the abuse first unit that can actually do something like this yet I do so,
I think it started from their like here. Imagine if you have these children that never know the rest of the world exists, yeah, you know what does that mean how you know and how did how do you do that and What does it mean and what kind of people you know come out of that and invite yeah yeah yeah, I so it's it's a very close, family movie. It is it's funny, because the first time I ever heard about it was years ago I had do you know his his name is dino. Stay the topless, oh yeah, yeah, you know his work, I've I've. I've read one of his screenplays I've seen the series that he'd done or, or and or or moral or oral oral. He loved that yeah yeah spoke to him on the phone a couple he loves, you yeah yeah, no he's he's great yeah, yeah, yeah and he's like lives, a very interesting life, but he what did he say
well then my eyes are my eyes are terrible, because we we tell we he said I don't blame my parents, there are people their computers. They just do this like we all do there are deep. Their idea of love was worry, worry worry, worry, worry, shelter, shelter worry, worry, worry we Where are you? What are you doing? You know they were greek in fact, eight movie, everyone should see is called dog tooth. It's a greek movie. It's up for an academy award this year, but worry is a huge part of the greek culture. Is that a general election, I you know, I understand being greek. I understand you know what he means is a tight. hold I don't know if it's green mediterranean, maybe family and how know kids and
may be staying with their parents longer than than usual. Aha and there's that link, which is stronger. Oh, I saw it, it could be, but you know like with all things, but it wasn't the way you grew up. it was exactly the opposite of circumstances. Give you a little more freedom in a way yeah that It's true and the the said in the beginning, like I add, an oath You could easily make a decision like that in greece, I'm going to become a filmmaker having your parent. herons around you that are, we would actually say that, and they wouldn't go like right. It has all came up and running in within within dog to like them. That's the idea that you know how much control that people have over people's perceptions, I'd I've, another guest on who actually made a movie with very With the same line, but it was a very kind of pithy. You know cute move that had a narrative structure was by the got. You know, kyle mooney he's on esa. Now he made a movie called bigs, be barely a year in.
The bear is essentially that idea of where this kid was kidnapped, and held hostage. Basically and his father was creating a t, a I watched both of them within a week of each other like an interesting that very different approaches, s idea, but with that world. So you know you're able to explore the your sexuality power dynamics in ino, over yeah violence. Strange fears, the cat. was hard for me. I have cats of deaf difficult. My girlfriend could watch it right, but you know strange strangest thing about? woolen animals in films me how they are affected more from vice and on animals, then violence on p I think that a lot of people think that neil people have a common. Sure. True that animals are more innocent, then you're yeah. I get that yeah. I just
watch the wild bunch again and it was like, oh my god, how many horses went down for that movie. Well, you cat did you not ours? No I'm just saying in infection how people are affected in fiction. No, absolutely because I think it must be the ns. I remember watching these. Have you watched this film highly by this mexican fill me now. Good mother skylanders is really good, but he's really violent. It's you know it's about. What goes on in mexico and his people? and yeah heads being chopped off hanging from bridges and all that, but there's a scene where a policeman picks up a little dog and breaks his in that, invest. That's when the cinema or when it is in what do you make of it? Do you think it's the innocent thing? I think you're yeah you're onto something there like the yeah, so that movie like dogtooth, I e you know again like I, I I found it
Wheatley compelling and in a little bit too disturbing when and it you definitely honored the town, and then you evolve into the out. Watch movie, it's fun for me to do this, What was the? What was the inspiration going into that film? What were you like? I got an idea. This is we're going make a movie about it. That sir will. First of all, I work very closely with them is fully within we ride together to him he's. A very good friend of mine is a famous valley poker, so we worked together very closely and the doktor was affirmed the first, whom we rode together here and then how do you feel? This guy. He in order to have white, get some sort of simpatico some sort of neo like he would seem to me that it would be not that easy to find a guy who's like we understand, yeah, no he's very rare, but I I found him in a commercials agency. He was he used to work. He was a writer, for
Herschel's a coffee, and I had done you know some have directed some of the scripts that he hadn't written, and I saw that he was a very specific mind and yeah. We we we became friendly, and then I asked him if he wanted to write his screenplay with me, and that was dogtooth was the first time he'd ever written. You know, We are, and we we spend that we spend a lot, time writing that and figuring out when you deal with What type of eye I duke! Do you mind? The word absurdism ism my aim anything absolute is quite limiting, but no I don't I it's when you dealing with that with beats like that, where you you're just sort of waking a moving these actors through there It's obviously not random, but you're going scene for scene. You know what working with. Somebody else what what dictates, whether it's, whether you've you've landed? or not like it in any particular thing, like even the scene where she does the flash dance after they all start dancing and then
keeps dancing and then she gets worn out. Do you look at each? The scenes in their own little arcs. Yes, right, I do actually doctor was a very, very particular process. Now, as we hadn't done it before together and, as I say, was a famous is first time writing a scream play and we actually see did by. I had that view dna came to with the idea, and then we just started writing scenes not even whole story, so we I started writing scenes to see if this thing kind of made sense and how would we would approach it yeah and from writing like nine ten scenes yeah, I we, we thought that this is there's something in there and this is working, and so, let's sit down and write the whole story that's going to go, and but after
I think we approached it in a more conventional way where we had the idea and then we kind of go down were out for we wrote down the story in the characters and then started writing scenes, and I yeah. There was a discussion. So after a doctor when we started discussing what what should we do next, it's you know we wanted to make more for it's interesting, because I just realized that that sort of like I like the way that again, I'm part of that theme of of people. Not replaceable, but people playing parts like in dogtooth. You know you have this. woman. Who is the security guard at the factory where the father works and he would take her home to have sex with his teenage son and then you know that that's goes awry through a certain series of events and they just decide the elder sister can do it in a safer
keep it in the house like even there's no outside influence. I just. I think it's important this conversation with you, because you or are really you know digging and enjoying the favourite, and something you directed, but you do have this film If you have these very specific types of movies, I think people should see and you get their mind. Blown so going to the alps so now you're working differently, you're, not just writing pieces. You've got. You decided what was the original I so there's an idea, I think we were discussing about grief and they're famous saying something about someone making phone calls for ending to be some one that was dead. Someone in order on members on purpose. I know I mean not a prank call branco like someone would the commission someone to do that for him so that he kind of
at the memory of that person or the presence that person alive. And then I went like you know that it would be more interesting if that was actually. There was an interaction in a physical contact and how about having the people that were going to you know actually do that. then we just started creating this world. And I also think I think a friend of ours, found a I let her in his house by a person was looking to do some kind of work in the letter he he he rose, I can I can do your shopping. I can come and have conversations with you. I can yeah your friend, we haven't go for for walks and Manion, so we so that was also the kind of thing that new pointed towards. You know people that
our may be lonely or are going through something that they may need to. You know, commissioner, friendship. write to someone so oh. You know those kind of ideas morphed into you know the story about people that have lost some And how do you deal with it? And would it be interesting if you know you hired people to? pretend to be the the the people that of the right- and that's that's this- that that's the baseline but yeah, you very quickly me realize, like an unlucky, not unlike your other movies at that's, not right what this is about, but it seems that in talking to you that that the excitement of generating these ideas, once you have this, this framework which is a loose framework to see what these care there's will do that. You know
the excitement of of just letting letting your mind and imagination go in in how these people interact and in what happens- and it doesn't seem like why is, is important question at all. No, it's more about making an experiment in you know, throwing all these people in this situation and see how they interact and You know what comes out of it and making observations or exposing x. You know exposing people in then again: people according to their own personalities and experiences and cultural backgrounds, or whatever will make out different things. recognize different things right in those situations right and they might come up with me. Why were what that? Guy? That mean? to them when it did so in the even if they can identify that yeah. It's the feeling and end, but young, very grass, of many of much of it and
it just like I mean do you get excited when you decide that you know she's going to go back to the dance hall and and If we danced with her fathers, a friend and then an adventure. We throw her on the floor and begin hitting our debt is at one with a moment where your writing that you, like is good. We got it and even more exciting the fact that it, sir real mother, real life. It is the labour there's just but don't do Nothing up thing in the beautiful thing about that movie is that it starts with this. You know very pressing gymnastic coach dear telling- this gymnast? Who I guess the actress? Is your wife knows that she can dance to a modern pop song, she's, not for it and if she
Actually, I began he's going to beat the shit out of her and then like throughout this entire insane. You know, grief, ridden weird movie, you book end it with her. You know you're being able to dance to a pop song and they hug and it's like for some reason. The ending is completely earned. It was very satisfying. It sounds great. The way you describe it it gets me excited. I want to make that movie yeah I just want. I just want people to know if they're sitting here listening going well, that sounds interesting. A group of people that you know Would that help people who are grieving? It's just not about that. The age group of people that very early on named themselves after mountains and have weird day interactions that sometimes become violent and nonsensical, and I and it'll make you wonder about everything and then and then what I like, I said before after exiting the movie in my own house everyday, becomes very you know. I got I'm very aware of the life I'm living. which I think is a good thing right.
Yeah. I were going keep doing. This now officer seem to me you're, like a young and make something accessible I want to make a movie that everyone can enjoy. Do you realize exactly how we we approached it? no, but the difference is that it was that film quite important, because it was the first english language film that I so after outside basically, decided to leave grease and and live in london and start making english language films, because know the way I made those films. Beginning in greece. It was me know well financing, just a bit thanks friendlier people work for no money, no pay or very little and we had to pay for it. You know through making commercials and other people helped us as well, but it was you know, tiny, small film, yes,
you know if I wanted to progress in? You know make other things and be able to make more choices about the stories I wanted to tell and pay who propel he paid as well and make this for a living. I had to start making english language films, it wasn t was accessible and yeah. So that was the part that part of it. That said I'm going to make english language show so they're more accessible in a way and I'll get, little bit of more financing in order to be able to make them attract an interesting actor, and I then both of the alps and the added cause. She's, very good, cheap, big actress in grief. No, no, no, I mean sees more of a alternative. Evac is not like the well known tv actor right right right again. Cinema is not very big in rice and she does theaters
like devised theater, and yet because I can see that there are moments in the film. Were you know you really let them loose a little bit yeah? Well, that's! yeah. Of course I mean that's the best thing. If you let the actors loose, you may I write Joyce above addison, then you let them loose so lobster has if early straight set up, if you, if you're single and you don't get gas Buddy you gotta this place and then enough, you guys are an amount of time and then, if you don't get, somebody become an animal. I have your joy exactly it's technology is not important. It's just a room when two in the face, haggling and rumors about rumours how it it's diane bit sort of a disturbing vision. But it's it's. It is a full vision. Like me, you do have a story there that you're honoring, unlike the other ones, but maybe because it is in english that it seems
a little more. Sl in the sense that, like you, are following a story right yeah I dont see much different in terms of we. I don't find it Thirdly, more narrative than phone. I guess not, I guess nigh. I guess it wait if you're familiar with it is this. is kind of a genre movie, though right well, his with zones, rightly, this Toby in greece and breathe prison drowning gallery a little bit of prison drama, but also just one those ones where, where it's like this- is clearly may be a future of some kind, as I inspection prison, the area and romantic comedy the abbot, Definitely romantic comedy it's very it's very cute, and white. Why rachel weiss? Why she's, weisz and Colin Farrell interior movies So you know you do make somewhat of a commitment to to
certainly him as an actor and in driving to your films. What, qualities in him that that make him compelling for you, as as a director, heaven as an actor. Well, I always liked colony of in blue I think is, is one of the great performances I've seen on and I thought he had. He has a very special quality he and his he's charming and funny, and here you can really he's sympathetic, no matter what he does. and he really shut him down in the last happy and you got him pudgy and you got him yeah a bit muted but he's Still very charm? Yes, yes, I am, and I and I I met, I met him. I we we. We spoke through skype, the last time and what went on
for an actor in trying to decide. I you know, try to watch a lot of stuff, not just necessarily the work, but so you know interviews or whatever I can find the error. So I can see how they are. I mean it's not like it, it's how they are near, as real people, even in interviews, but you get a, and from when someone's acting I so I had just thought I'd- we have an excellent sense of humour in the other is there's all these qualities about him that I just felt were right. Yeah Think that movie also in terms of like maintaining my argument of accessibility is that you know, through whatever surreal or or or seemingly absurd, interactions, almost all about that movie. They do speak to relationship yeah. I think I think one of the things is that that were relation ships are very big part of our mere life, and that may be speak some more people than
yeah: why do people belong together? Yeah yeah? Why are we with each other the you know it's about love and all these kind of things are really a concern us a lot of the time and we are animals too it's nice out in the woods where you just see a llama or something walk by there is a couple of exotic animals. The camel, camel and out just starting to realize that, like the rabbits that he was killing for her to eat, they were once people- probably maybe we're. Doin rose. Thirty rabbits get a passage water rabbits in that in the new movie to fear. I never thought of that. You didn't I noticed that when I was watching the lobster again, I watches second time and get some for rabbits. When did you add the rabbit's? Did the two, the favourite I do yeah I mean we yeah. We were like looking for something
to represent you, children, their children, but we was in and, like you know, rabbits always Seventeen little graves, yeah yeah rabbits are always good for yeah. Ah, you know they're very cute, no one's ever going to say fuck that rabbit yeah yeah, except for Emma stone's character, but alright Then we go the killing, the sacred deer, which I watched the first time weak week or so ago. That's another movie where I noticed that's when I noticed that that the thing that you do, that yes imports. What you're saying about tone is that your A meticulous that year, yet the amount of that movie that was shot in a hospital and then a town that didn't have a lot of activity will clear choices that that really kind of made the two don't even more impactful like get you're you're kind of tight with that right, you give you you, you were you're like it. This hospital's got to look a certain way, I want to know
one of the main things about the hospital was that I wanted to feel that it was a hospital where they knew what they were doing. Because there's that that part I, where you know they figure out what's wrong with the kids. Yet why right? So you need if they had to be the high level. So if it was like a you know, shitty hospital that you could very easily dismiss the whole thing like they do. You know they don't know what they're doing whether he doesn't he goes. Who proper javier or some other end, give some possibility to him as a character in his successful and all that, so it had to focus on what had to be kind of state of the art hospital, and that story is a another. It's almost a genre film in that it's like a you're one of those weird mystical kind of a fantasy. I are no what you would call it, but vital that this sort of like the weird kid with this group power, or, like horror, okay, that that movie, even more so than the lobster,
have more of a narrative through line. You take that as an insult, I think it's okay, it's okay. To have more than that, it's okay to have a story, I'm I'm fine with it. Do I that's why we're trying to do? Although we know all of our homes have a story, but that one was like you know once you have kids like that. The thing that I think a lot of your movies do is that because your brain is working for reason or logic or or explanation that make assumptions and, and I think you know throughout all of your movies like, You realize that the assumptions don't matter as much as you know something that you're not quite conscious of happening to you, yeah. You know what I mean you're sort of like well, who is this fucking kid? What's with the watch? Why is he at the hospital? Is this some weird to you know pedophilia relationship? What is happening and you don't even let us know what the kid is until like a half an hour in and then you're like. Oh, this just took a turn for the fuckin weird, and then it becomes a.
About, you, know choices and decisions and mistakes that we make and and and you what what is the price of that right? Our goal is a value that you say you don't understand many things above my film, but you you really explain them so well and even neurotic better than I could you aren't you go with the other two or that it would be great, is quite remarkable potatoes question. He felt a lot lot into it. I have not yet have not. I just I just yo split them out there and then mark and talk to you about. Well, you know I I try. I try, I feel better now about about me. sperience, because your idea now that the reserve- because I It's the right way to be, and I don't think you're doing it on purpose. I think you're being honest about it, but the that you know you are making the thing, and you know you just follow through on these. And and I'm going to have my own experience- if I was-
you're telling you my experience in your like, oh boy, you, Mr Hager, it then I would be very bad for me so killing the sacred dear you happy with Alan. I seen it I haven't seen it for a while after I finished it, I guess you know we achieved certain things. We failed in others yeah. You know it's not for me to say ok, I again you know, I do understand that and not watching what you do here. Yet, as you watch known and I'd like I have these conversations, I don't listen to them again, my producer, we, he remembers everything cause he spends another hour to with these three hours, the elder you edit and now he does like he's gotten amazing memory like people That dino quote. I wonder matter like you. I have the conversation I'm engaged in it and then one walk away from it. Ya'll remember some things, but after time it's like, I ve done many of those were yet
So the new movie which people like the the favorite is like this is the first time you directed someone else's film yeah, but it in the end. It wasn't very different because I span lay aid beers developing the scroll, my god, who wrote who wrote the original there was an original script by Deborah Davis and I and then I worked on a on it. A with her and restructured the story. But then I felt the need to bring on someone different to bring. a different tone, your guy approach tone mcnamara said to. I was the first time that I work with him. australian writer playwright and screenwriter what what it? What why that decision, like what? What what was the was original script? More of a historical piece yeah about yeah was a more straightforward, historical peat piece about
story. Queen Anne is renowned. What perry was at what year, seventeen early 1700s 18th century It was a historical drama that was telling the story. Yeah yeah, but I I had a very different idea about you know what I want. It is to be in the tone what like that idea like what was it? What what when you worked at the original script? What were you like? I want this to be this again and it's it's not. You know imminent yes, it is more about. I I mean interested in the story. This you know, is Just think about the women, the others three women. It was interesting that the actually existed and at some point in time you know these women that had such power that I could affect the lives of so many other people and I also you know personally her story and stories, you quite sad.
Went through a lot, and so it was, and it was interesting story in the fact that you know these people and their lives. You know fa, with so many other people just felt like a rich thing to explore, but I I didn't want to make. You know another historical drama yeah I was trying to figure out. You know what would be the tone that would get something different that would make it feel more relevant to us more contemporary So I yeah, I started thinking that first of all, it should be funny and young but because it is dark anyway. It's quite a dark. What are you hurt there either very tragic figure. She were last year, seventeen children into their ill with the yeah throughout her whole life with some ensues she seasons, who was very young and soon
is you know, put in a position that she couldn't really cope with and he had a handle and and and is a very responsible position to have Yeah So you know it, but I wanted to bring in the comedy in a very specific tonality and I also visually and aesthetic clean and make it feel more contemporary. So I started making all this. Decisions along the line wasn't like one moment: we were like figure out how this is going to right, but starting from screenplay? I was you know. I read like hundreds of writers to find what I had in my mind, and I came across tony's stuff, and I was I like. very confident and then you know we started working together and was very easy because we had you know we were thinking of. But the film in the same way, and he had the voice that I was looking for it wasn't like you're trying to someone right in a certain way. May I
much like how I found a famous and we you know we matched than we each other and right, so he he was able to honor some of your ideas for what to do through the language and the language being that you, you You took some liberties and in terms of yet more contemporary, It is right and yeah, but yea, it's weird. It's it's indifferent, pretty well cause I've seen that done in other movies, where it sort of each year to up front by day. there's some moments with the dancing and then some of the things they say. But I mean, must have been quite a lot or two to really get that pay, it because you really shoot the hell out of it. I mean you know you really can I bathed in it you know in any. I must be used to I I think I read somewhere that you use.
a point of references in terms of like what you were watching too, to get the the long. Got that you wanted in and how you you shoot that aurora and in that way, and you looked at some other movies, right, yeah more like a known p, films yeah just again to get our minds me. No in by you incredible people that have done amazing things so we're watching. You know Zulawski films, and a day s eye reggie, I'm Adele's yeah, that's true, but because that, because of the tone, bialy was a you know, it was a funny film. I am I really like that film great, and all about eve? Obviously, the you know is quite a a reference for for the fillmore. The servant Juliet closes the servant at the ref movie, ah yeah.
Was he added here that word dead, that name being kicked around a lot, but that was some about another lately, british filmmaker correct, yeah, yeah, Oh Peter Green, a ways the draftsman, contrary air or england, bourbon bergman's, cries and whispers with the three women in a house. Yeah, we watched admiral, morgan, nameberry films, I mean feel, generally speaking, cause you wanted to you. Your vision was something to do with the the type of shots he wanted it's the general feel that and to get that grit in all that costume for me was the architecture was important like these huge space.
isn't that were inhabited by so few people, rather a small figure within that huge space. You do when you visit those places. You're, like this was just one guy's room, the yeah exactly so there was this bad in the corner of this huge room and a huge bed, but it looked very small yeah within that huge room, and so that was, important for me and so trying to find a way to film this and we ended up using quite extreme wide angle, lenses to enhance that kind of, I feel, like the loneliness of a person within such a room, but also well know. In the end, I realized that it is also very eleven to the theme of the film, like you know these few people affecting a much bigger world the much bigger picture and it also makes it feel quite claustrophobic in a way cause. You know you see the end of things
though, wars surrounding writing react that she was so feeble from he's in your hand and in lack of confidence, that it was isolating? You know you she, he she felt very isolated and that you know the difference between you and what was going on the interior of the castle and even when anybody would just get on the horse and go anywhere you'd be like oh, my god. They got for a minute here by the by that amazing british actress. What's her name, the lead livia home, she was in also in the lobster yeah yeah, but she just is amazing, nay I mean what was your experience directing her? How did you push her out there? Why I have to do much as his sisters and grow again. I it's is making the right choice and especially with the libya we would want. reasons that it took so long to make this film is there. I had to wait, you know for the
at moment that the whole cast kind of fell together at the same time, and I waited for a living, because I couldn't think of any one else, though, could play this character. I know I just things is unique and amazing and needs again. You just have to give them the space reactors, navigate them and you know get various options of things in order to be able to fine later on in the edit. You know the performance and where the story's going and when you discover what the film is an emma stone was great says: yes, great too Did you know she was going to be so great? I knew it. I have to say I knew it. I was very confident about her and she's sincere also really wanted to do this mc really loved the script and was very excited and is eager to do. Difference is eager to do different things and
you know the only thing, my nothing was about the accent, so we we did before making the final decision hurt me that we're gonna make this together when she's, some avoid a voice dialect. oh and she did some there, and then we did some rehearsals and she was brilliant, and so we made sure that you know we wouldn't have that problem we'll be able to do whatever we wanted a goddamn yeah? No, she sees amazing and sees you knows, he's going to do great things. I think there's a lot her suppose I haven't seen yet After when she d billy jean king, she was great yeah and knows his heir and rachel weiss again great. gotcha you like working with her, yet she can do anything to ass. He came near his quite some time in all three of them, I was very like I mean it was like a dream. You know chaos
interesting and I guess one of the reasons it resonating so deeply as it is a movie about women and about the power struggle between these women and how women treat each other in a certain way in the seventeen hundreds in a castle. So some of with historically accurate away at it, but not all the debates ec stories quite accurate was the sexual dynamics accurate? While we don't have proof I don't have anything, but there's a there's, a lot of letters between them. It's it seems that there was that there was that kind of and how how did the original screenwriter feel about the final project? Well, I sees she loves it. yeah I think a lot of it is true to the the the core of it here and it's just you
they the approach in the tone that is quite different and brings things that whole story into now and makes it relevant. certain way and I think you know she appreciates that and understands that great and endeavour watch that one again, no last time was in venice when we premiered than they had you feel about Oh, I was hold nauseous now you can, you can see a film, probably within those conditions, on your swearing in your, not people loved it didn't when the price yeah yeah, but I mean, does doesn't make you referred while you're watching it, especially so what so what now you're going to run around and promote this movie, and maybe one a statue or two and then but you're already working on the next one. I've
I've started working on. You know a few films, but it's hard to trade right now with the promotion? All these that going on that is going on into the new things, but I am looking forward to you know: focus on the creative stuff again, but yeah. I have like three or four screenplays I've started and they kind of piled up, because I made the killing of a sacred deer and the favorite kind of back to back yeah. So I didn't have much time to focus. any development or you you'll have time you're young man yeah. And what does any more nerve? Still pretty young I forgot to ask you about this because everyone seems to be talking about the lack of of lighting the use of natural light, the berry lending, the fear of the movie in that was most we true, yeah yeah its term in its true. For Well all of my films. I don't particularly like artificial lighting and
I I also like the result, but also the way of working without a lot of equipment and just have a camera craze natural light and just have the actors and be able to in free to just change things around with the unions with hate. You know the the lights are out there. We just don't use them. Yeah best union job in the world is one of your movies yeah. Exactly you guys, just sit down, take it easy yeah so, but he he with the equipping it's available today must be little less challenging them. What covert was dealing with indonesia? We need to use the matter, the language they answer, lenses emmi. We have faster, let not faster than those actually bird fast lenses, and you know you can push film quite a bit so it's not as challenging, but those big space Sometimes it was like trying to light those huge spaces with just with handles the idea that a lot of kant what's in that event, did gathered and there's there's only occur.
I love scenes where we had to you know, supplement the light because you know of the height of the ceilings or outside where there was you know nothings. Here it was night with no and we had to live a light by was only a couple of times is greater. What do you think we covered it some of it yeah. What are you hiding seem to know everything beforehand. What are you I don't I didn't know anything. I just watched the movie and you win like I don't understand anything, and then you analyzed everything perfectly in the great blog yeah, but you didn't. It wasn't that he would have said that? No, no matter what I said, no true, ok yeah that it was my experience when I go, there's no wrong on or right right place. That's it! That's a pretty placed a blood you, you described the films in detail which is-
hard to spoil which has the benefit of the way you work yeah, I'm not going, I'm not giving anything away with any of them, except for like you. Could, though, you could, though you could with a sacred deer good with a lot of a match. We'd be not the first to Why there's no way you can like you? I could talk about to their hopes and people would be like. I, you fuck that movie I can watch in their yeah none. I think you did a grudge. oh good. Why a good luck at the globes thanks if that's important eu the way he did, I mean it's important for the film. in the end, your next film, by great talking to you man. Thank you, all right there you go. The favorite obviously go see it. If you haven't too great film watch, all of them watch dogtooth first now. I'm gonna some fun on my guitar I really settled into this telecaster sound through the echoplex through the old fender amp. I'm just going to do
things. I've done before a little differently,
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Transcript generated on 2022-07-17.