CS Interview: Richard Kelly talks Southland Tales’ Cannes 15th anniversary
As the film nears its 15th anniversary of debuting at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival and with time for the brand new Blu-ray release featuring that infamous cut, ComingSoon.net got the chance to speak to Southland Tales writer/director Richard Kelly to go over the latter and revisiting the polarizing cult classic sci-fi crime thriller.
RELATED: Exclusive: Richard Kelly Talks Donnie Darko Sequel & Rod Serling Biopic
ComingSoon.net: So Southland Tales, After all, 15 years later, it proves to be still, for me, probably the most ambitious, creative, baffling, so many great and various emotions as a result. What’s it like for you personally approaching on that anniversary this time around later all?
Richard Kelly: Well, it’s all those emotions, but I’m grateful and I’m hopeful for the chance to sort of revisit Southland Tales and when there exists a opportunity for us to accomplish something much bigger with it, I’m very grateful for that because our intention to make it had been always for this to be this therapeutic work of cinema for folks to see as a reply to type of the doomsday of the planet that we’re surviving in. Today the doomsday of 2006 is currently much different. It’s much bigger and it’s a lot more all-encompassing in plenty of ways. Nevertheless, you know, day most of us live with the risk of the apocalypse each and every. And so, this film was designed to be, again, a therapeutic fix for people that want to buy or might need to experience it. So I’m very grateful that folks are excited to activate with this particular film in the end these years still.
CS: So considering that you wanted the cathartic nature of it, how did the complete story arrived at your mind? It’s this interesting mix of the political elements and the sci-fi elements therefore a variety of things. After all, how did the specific elements type of come to your brain?
RK: Well, the complete story actually began as some sort of a LA crime caper. And you’ll note that architecture still quite definitely at the epicenter of the story of the film with – therefore the original early draft of Southland Tales, it had been a troop of frustrated actors in this beach, just like a comedy troupe to choose they’re likely to blackmail a celeb who’s performing a ride along research trip for his action film that he’s making. Therefore, it was such as this troop of comedy actors teaming up with a porn star, and something of them is really a cop and contains a twin brother and they’re likely to extort money out of this actor. Also it ended with a blimp exploding over Downtown LA, for some good reason, you understand? And so that has been just like the original architecture of the film. And, I believe as time wore on and I acquired more sort of potential opportunities presented to really make the film, I started layering in what I call just like the Philip K. Dick layer to the story when it comes to all the politics and the religion and the science fiction and every one of the layers type of surrounding this crime story at the biggest market of the movie.
Click to buy your copy of the special new Blu-ray edition here!
CS: Obviously the Cannes cut, it had been just a little polarizing in its reception, and in the years since you’ve discussed fascination with possibly returning for an effective home media release with it. After all, that which was it like for you personally heading back to it and type of making sure it had been just right to provide to audiences now on Blu-ray?
RK: Well, I wish to be clear to individuals who the Cannes version that you see with this Blu-ray is really a work happening version of the film. It’s similar to going into a period machine back again to 2006 and seeing virtually just what we showed to the audience at Cannes and what we taken to Cannes was an unfinished work happening. It had a whole large amount of unfinished visual effects inside it, it’s type of such as a time capsule. However when you watch the Cannes version watching the theatrical version also, you can view just how much more there’s that people can hopefully do with Southland Tales and the prospect of a genuine proper expanded version of it with today’s technology and today’s distribution ecosystems, the more we are able to do with it hopefully. I would like to be clear to individuals who the Cannes version, we haven’t done any new visual effects work to the Cannes version. It’s presented as a restoration of that which was shown in 2006.
CS: Just what exactly concerning the Cannes version do you consider – After all, you say there is more inside it obviously, but what specifically concerning the additional stuff in the Cannes footage can you say resonates with you from the storytelling way more compared to the theatrical?
RK: Well, The Cannes is thought by me version tells deeper in to the individual characters. You can save money time with the average person characters, with the actors and their performances. There’s also more of a gigantic subplot that people never really surely got to fully explore which involves Janeane Garofalo’s character, Army General Teena MacArthur, her character, who’s monitoring some type of mysterious game experiment that’s linked to the gigantic machine out in the ocean, the choice fuel generator machine out in the ocean called Utopia 3. There’s some hints of some “Dungeons & Dragons” gameplay going on between her character and Simon Theory, another Army General character played by Kevin Smith in the film. So there’s much more big science fiction items that we only surely got to scratch the top with and you will see more of it in the Cannes version of the film. So, I’m grateful that folks can at the very least see some of these scenes contained in the film and how they sort of expand the planet of Southland Tales in a manner that is much, much larger than has been captured up to now even.
CS: So because you mention a few of the various roster of cast you had in the film, with Donnie Darko, you already proved you could draw in an excellent balance and ensemble all of them out. But with Southland, I felt just like the ensemble was even more elevated just. That which was that like accumulating that roster of talent for the such unique characters over the board?
RK: It had been beautiful. It had been so great to access work with most of these amazing actors. I really like most of these actors. I’ve loved their work growing up always. Sort of the shared DNA of each actor in this film is they will have great comedic improv skills. They are able to all think on the feet plus they can perform comedy plus they all sort of have this type of foothold in pop culture in various ways for the reason that they’re from Saturday Night Live or pro wrestling or perhaps a sitcom or an ’80s action film or perhaps a cult film or all have this type of foothold in pop culture in a manner that I felt was – these were each such as this wonderful new little bit of candy to type of placed into this collage, this type of big doomsday apocalyptic story, to possess each one of these wonderful sort of candy colored personalities and these funny people showing up through the entire film.
CS: Who you say was probably the most vital little bit of casting for you personally since – After all, obviously, you understand, Dwayne Seann and Johnson William Scott and the primary group are very important to the film, but who you say was probably the most vital for you personally in addressing become a part of the film?
RK: Well, listen, I say many people are vital over the board. Obviously Dwayne and Sean and Sarah were just like the three anchors with regards to their characters anchoring the complete story. But I’ll say getting Justin Timberlake was something special because he became the narrator of the film really, I decided once we were shooting his scenes, I immediately decided he needed to be the narrator due to the music video dream sequence at the biggest market of the film, that is sort of the heartbeat of the complete film, where he’s lip syncing to The Killers and he breaks the fourth wall and he’s looking directly into the lens. That dictated if you ask me that he should be the narrator as the narrator can be breaking the fourth wall. So, we did two versions of Justin’s voiceover, for the Cannes version of the movie, I had Justin take action in an exceedingly playful sort of a mischievous tone and I believe directly after we were so scolded at Cannes and we were sort of traumatized after it, we’d to recut the movie down and make an effort to beg and plead for visual effects money and slice the movie down and stuff. I brought Justin back and I had him re-record the voiceover like Martin Sheen in Apocalypse Now in a more somber sort of monotone and Justin did an incredible job in both voiceovers, but I’ll say in the end these full years have passed, I favor his voiceover in the Cannes version and the type of playful nature of it because just given everything that’s happened on earth, I believe that’s more of a fitting sort of tone in hindsight. I believe that’s area of the way that I look at things, from the Cannes version that I favor.
RELATED: CS Interview: John Rhys-Davies Talks Grizzly II: Revenge
and directed by Kelly
Written, the film is defined throughout a three-day heat wave right before an enormous 4th of July celebration in a then-near future twisted version of LA, an action star stricken with amnesia meets up with a porn star who’s developing her very own reality TV project and a policeman who holds the main element to a massive conspiracy.
Much like Kelly’s debut effort, Donnie Darko, the film features an ensemble cast which includes Dwayne Johnson (Hobbs & Shaw), Seann William Scott (Lethal Weapon), Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Mandy Moore (Midway), Justin Timberlake (Trolls World Tour), Miranda Richardson (Good Omens), Wallace Shawn (Toy Story 4), Bai Ling (Crank: High Voltage), Nora Dunn (The Boss Baby: Back Business), John Laroquette (The Good Fight), Kevin Smith (Jay and Silent Bob Reboot), Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation), Wood Harris (Creed II) and Janeane Garofolo (Wet Hot American Summer).
After finding a polarized reception at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival, Sony Pictures acquired the domestic & most of the international rights to the film from original distributor Universal Pictures and hit select theaters in November 2007, where it continued to get a mixed reception from audiences and critics alike and flopped financially, only grossing around $374K on its $17 million budget. Not surprisingly, the film would garner a cult following.
The post CS Interview: Richard Kelly Talks Southland Tales’ Cannes 15th Anniversary appeared on ComingSoon first.net.