Wes Anderson’s “The Darjeeling Limited” is big in heart and oddly enough, spirituality. Shot almost entirely in India, the story follows three brothers trying to cope with the death of their father.
At the Variety Screening Series, the 38-year-old Texas native said it was a beautiful, arduous process.
“The movie really began with me wanting to make a picture in India. And that was, in part, inspired by movies. The films of Satyajit Ray, which I really loved all of my life and subsequently, the real reason why I wanted to go to India,” he exclaimed. “The other big inspiration was the idea of working with Jason [Schwartzman] and Roman [Coppola] on a script and mixing all of our ideas together.”
The three of them wrote furiously and decided it would be best to travel to India to scout locations and “act out” some of the scenes.
“So we were traveling by train in India one day and we end up in this village. When we arrived, they welcomed us with a standard ritual for visitors, where you sit down with the elders of the village and do this opium drinking ceremony with them,” Anderson said with a smile. “So one of them is sitting there steeping it in tea and then he pours the opium in his palm and you have to slurp it out. You can do it once, twice, or three times, but I think we all did it three times. When we left we all felt like ‘this is a great village. Let’s shoot here!’”
When asked what he thought was the most memorable moment of the shoot, Brody recalled a beautiful Christmas dinner with the cast that took place in a remote field in India.
“It was beautiful. It was a very spiritual night. When we left though, I was with my girlfriend and we were in the back of a pick-up truck and I was staring dreamily into her eyes when out of nowhere, a low-hanging powerline went under my neck and I struggled to free myself. It was a very dramatic, romantic ending to the whole shoot.”