×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Luca Guadagnino Talks Making ‘Splash,’ Next Is ‘Suspiria’ Redo

Six years after launching “I Am Love” from Venice, Luca Guadagnino is back on the Lido with the more ambitious “A Bigger Splash,” a psychological drama about a rock star and a photographer (Tilda Swinton and Matthias Schoenaerts, respectively) whose vacation on the sun-drenched Sicilian island of Pantelleria takes an unexpected turn when a record producer (Ralph Fiennes) and his daughter (Dakota Johnson) burst on the scene. Guadagnino spoke about the process that led to making “Splash,” which Fox Searchlight has set for a May 13, 2016, U.S. release.

“I am Love” took your career to the next level, after “The Protagonists” and “Melissa P.” Now comes “A Bigger Splash.” What took you so long?

Last month I counted how many scripts I’ve read since “I am Love,” and it’s more or less 500. It gave me a fantastic read of the business. Many things I was reading six years ago seemed to be very much the thing to be done then, and then the effect evaporated immediately. I got the feeling that even if I had great stars, a great studio, I knew there was something false, like a trompe l’oeil,  so I ran away from trompe l’oeils. Having said that, I truly would love to be making films at a brisker pace, and I’m dedicating myself to that. But I am a control freak. I need to have a great deal of control and the ability to share my control with my collaborators and grant them the freedom and the quality of work I think these people deserve. If I don’t have those elements, I walk away.

StudioCanal, which asked you to direct this remake of Jacques Deray’s “La piscine,” seem to have been instrumental in creating the conditions to get “Splash” done.

I think that StudioCanal — and I’m not saying this to be unctuous — these people are the real thing. I grew up with a concept of cinema as a directorial thing, meaning the director is allowed to sail the ship. Not a dictatorial thing. Studiocanal believes in this. The inspiring quality of the collaboration that came out between me and them, Olivier Courson and Ron Halpern, and the rest of the team, it’s really remarkable.

On “Splash,” you worked with writer David Kajganich. How did this film come together creatively?

I think a script is great when it starts with the structure and works with the structure without falling into the typical three-act system in which the audience is ahead of the movie. I hate that; but that is like 99% of what I read. I like the idea that you do not precede the narration, and that’s what we tried with David.

The actors, Tilda Swinton, Ralph Fiennes, Dakota Johnson, Matthias Schoenaerts, really gave you a lot. Tell me about working with them. 

I am glad that they were so generous. Moviemaking is a dirty, tiring affair. The joy comes from the possibility to be free on set and really let loose.

The music obviously plays a very important part. Can you tell me about your relationship with the Rolling Stones?  Did they know that you were going to have a character (Harry) who had been their manager?

From day one the Rolling Stones were the spirit of the film, not just the soundtrack. We gave them the script and they gave a tip: they said: ‘Change that thing you had in Ralph Fiennes’ monologue to this.’ That was a great moment.

What’s on the horizon?

I’m going to direct a remake of Dario Argento’s “Suspiria.” I’m going to shoot the movie this winter. I think my friends at StudioCanal will be part of it.

More Film

  • Bac Launches 'Alice And The Mayor,'

    Bac Launches 'Alice And The Mayor,' 'My Days of Glory' at UniFrance Rendez-Vous (EXCLUSIVE)

    Paris-based Bac Films is launching a slate of new acquisitions at the UniFrance Rendez-Vous in Paris, including Nicolas Pariser’s “Alice And The Mayor” with Fabrice Luchini, and Antoine de Bary’s concept comedy “My Days of Glory” with Vincent Lacoste. “Alice And The Mayor” stars Luchini as Paul Théraneau, a prominent French mayor who has run [...]

  • Viacom International Studios New Management Structure

    Federico Cuervo to Head New Management Structure at Viacom International Studios

    Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) –Americas has announced a new management structure for its fast-expanding Viacom International Studios (VIS) which will see Federico Cuervo filling the role of senior vice president-head of VIS, reporting to Darío Turovelzky, newly named SVP of global contents at VIMN Americas. Turovelzky remains co-chief of VIMN. Under the new structure, [...]

  • Berlin: Edko Films Picks up Zhang

    Berlin: Edko Films Picks up Zhang Yimou’s ‘One Second’

    Hong Kong studio Edko Films has picked up international rights to “One Second,” the newest movie by top Chinese director Zhang Yimou. The film will have its world premiere in competition in Berlin, it was announced this week. “One Second” is pitched as Zhang’s personal love letter to cinema, and as a return to his [...]

  • Sygeplejeskolen sc 205

    Claudia Boderke, Lars Mering Talk SF Studios ‘The New Nurses,’

    The inevitable comparison for SF Studios’ “The New Nurses,” at least from a Danish broadcast perspective, is “Something’s Rockin,’” another 2018 TV 2 Charlie show which was retro but forward-looking. “Something’s Rockin’” described the birth of an independent radio with culture in Denmark. Produced by SF Studios’ Senia Dremstrup (“Norskov”),  “The New Nurses” talks cleverly [...]

  • Robert Redford

    Robert Redford to Receive Honorary Cesar Award

    Legendary American actor and director Robert Redford is set to receive an honorary Cesar award, France’s equivalent of the Oscars, at the 44th annual César ceremony, which will take place on Feb. 22 in Paris. “An iconic actor, an exceptional director, a passionate producer, founder and president of Sundance, the most revered festival of independent [...]

  • Goteborg: Co-writer Hakan Lindhe on Viaplay’s

    Co-Writer Hakan Lindhe on Politics, Image in Viaplay’s ‘The Inner Circle’

    David Ehrling, Sweden’s Minister for Enterprise, who is tipped to be its next Prime Minister, spends a lot of the time in Sweden’s “The Inner Circle” not preparing his speeches, or in impassioned discussion of key political issues, but staring into the mirror, rain checking on his strong-jawed image. He spends much of his enterprise, [...]

  • 'Invisibles' Director Louis-Julien Petit On His

    'Invisibles' Director Louis-Julien Petit on his Socially-Minded Smash

    PARIS —  Far from a dumping ground, the months of January and February have become synonymous in France with the kinds of highly polished crowd-pleasing comedies that dominate the annual box-office. This year is no exception, only nestled among the likely blockbusters “Serial Bad Weddings 2” and “City Hunter” is Louis-Julien Petit’s socially minded dramedy [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content