French channel 2 talked with Cafe Society director Woody Allen about opening his new film at Cannes Film Festival this year, featuring a new still of Kristen Stewart's Vonnie character.
"In a sense it's my usual, romanticise view of New York and its life in late 30s - and how difficult life and love are or were even then, and haven't changed much now. It was a difficult sentence to say."
"I spent a whole year with people like Kristen Stewart, Blake Lively.. beautiful women.. talented men like Jesse Eisenberg for exemple.. And I worked with costumers and I worked with cinematographers and I escaped into the movies, I don't think about life, my whole life is all fantasy. From wen I was a little boy going to the movies to a grown up making movies."
THR: You had to reshoot part of Cafe Society. What happened?
I shot a few scenes in California with Bruce Willis, and Bruce was going to do something on Broadway [Misery] and it was just too much for him. So we replaced him with Steve Carell.
How did the movie come about?
I wanted to do kind of a novel on film, about a family and the relationships of the members toward one another, and the protagonist's love relationship. I wanted it to have the structure of a novel, so I could move around and dwell on various members of the family. That's why I narrated it because I was sort of the writer of the novel that you were experiencing when you saw the film.
Was the agent played by Carell based on anyone specific?
Yes and no. When I first started in the business, I was 16, 17, and I would go up to agents' offices. And these agents were very powerful figures to me. I remember going out to California once, going to William Morris, and there was a very beautiful receptionist there. And I thought, "My God, she's as beautiful as any of the movie stars."
What kind of things did you read for research to make the movie?
Well, you read the [old] gossip columns, the Hollywood columns, [which] were in New York as well. So much of what you knew from California, you knew from the columns that you got in New York — Hedda Hopper and Sheilah Graham. They would give you the Hollywood news, and it sounded very exciting.
This is your 12th film in Cannes.
It could be. I don't know. For years, I would send the film and not go. I don't know [why]. I never liked to fly on an airplane for six hours and get the time change. It makes me crazy; it takes me six months to get [over the time change]. Just from daylight saving time, I can't recover. So then I started to go, and my wife likes to go, she enjoys the South of France. I mean, I like the South of France, too. It's a film-oriented event, and so it's enjoyable.
Thanks to itsoktobeyou.org for translating!
Also, thanks to WoodyAllenPages for the THR/NewsRepublic links!
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