Tim Pope, best known for directing music videos and documentaries with musicians such as David Bowie, Iggy Pop, Neil Young and The Cure, is to direct “Drone,” his first narrative feature film in more than 20 years.
Speaking Monday at r7al, a new film event in Switzerland, Pope outlined his pitch for the film. “It is about a 22-year-old boy, who looks after his mother and finds freedom with his drone,” he said. “He forms a relationship [through the drone] with a woman in the same road as him who believes she is Marilyn Monroe. So the drone and her form a relationship.”
Pope added: “Okay, I am Mr. Metaphor – that is a metaphor for today.”
Pope developed his script for the film in close collaboration with actor Vincent Perez, the founder of r7al, and actress Victoria Scarborough. Pope and Perez had worked together on Pope’s last feature film as a director, 1996’s “The Crow: City of Angels,” in which Perez starred as The Crow. Harvey and Bob Weinstein were among that movie’s executive producers, an experience that Pope said “put me off making [feature] films for 20 years.”
But Pope and Perez have since “reconnected,” he said. The pair, along with Scarborough, spent a weekend together at Pope’s home in England to work on “Drone,” after which Pope said he spent “22 hours a day working on this idea and developing the script, and I am very excited.”
Pope said he would be working on music videos with four bands this year – The Cure, The The, Soft Cell and Neil Young – but hoped to be working on “Drone” after that. “I want to be shooting my film by this time next year,” he said.
Although it would be shot on a “relatively small budget,” it would be “very cinematic,” he said.
This year, Pope is also working on a feature documentary about The Cure’s 40 years in the music business, which will include archive footage supplied by the band’s front-man, Robert Smith.
“Robert Smith is giving me access to 50 boxes of film, which have never been seen before, of the early Cure days,” Pope said. “I want to make a film like ‘Goodfellas’ where Robert is narrating the film in a first-person way, and it is like crazy and we are on this journey.” He added, “Robert’s songs always deal with being the outsider.”
Pope started working with the band in 1981 and last worked with them on a music video in 1997 – on which his runner was Guy Ritchie. Pope toured with the band across six countries three years ago.
The Cure documentary is unlikely to be finished this year, Pope said.