Why Do Actors Keep Working With Wes Anderson? - The New York Times
Oct 22, 2021 2 mins, 41 secs
What is it about the director that draws stars like Frances McDormand and Tilda Swinton again and again?

It’s his first film set in France, and the first done as an anthology.

“I don’t know who gravitated toward whom,” Anderson said, in a voice message sent from the production of his 11th film, outside Madrid.

“But as soon as Owen Wilson and I started making a movie, well, I wanted Owen to be involved with the other movies I would do.

As soon as I had Bill Murray, I wanted him on the next one.

I wanted Jason Schwartzman.

“What I like to do is go to a place and have us all live there and become a real local sort of production, like a little theater company — everything works better for me that way,” said Anderson, who lives in Paris.

Anderson’s exacting, formalist vision — in his suits on set, “he doesn’t look like a Hollywood director, he looks like a Wes Anderson character,” his frequent star Adrien Brody said — is balanced by the camaraderie he creates when each day’s filming is wrapped.

I went home and told Joel [Coen, her filmmaker husband] there was somebody out there doing something familiar.

He surprised me — here was a director who I admired so much and he had known of my work for years, and told me he had actually gone with Owen to see “King of the Hill,” a film Steven Soderbergh had done, and I was cast in it at 19.

JEFFREY WRIGHT He wanted to have a call with me because he was in Paris, but as it turned out I was heading to Paris.

I didn’t know if he wanted me to speak French or English; he said maybe both.

I didn’t know [there would be full-frontal nudity], I didn’t understand, I think.

You could think she’s objectified, but she’s not, she’s very powerful.

WRIGHT Baldwin for me was a window through which I could kind of justify this Black gay man at that time fleeing America for the place we find in the film; the language, as written, is more Liebling.

I think it works.

There’s a tremendous amount of synchronicity that has to happen, because he often looks for a perfect take.

It’s not like he does close-up, close-up, close-up, and cuts them together.

You would think it would become tedious and the truth is, it’s somewhat hypnotically relaxing to do this thing over and over again, feeling the dolly moving, and knowing you’re in the right position doing the right thing.

BRODY It’s this beautiful and intense work day, and then, when that is completed, there is [deep breath] a giant exhale and we all kind of go home together, and it’s a giant familial dinner?

I like all my bunkmates, my mom’s visiting me — she’s been coming everywhere since “Darjeeling.” [His mother is the photographer Sylvia Plachy.] Wes’ll put her in the background.

Aside from the fact that he’s endlessly aware of every moment in the movie — how it looks, how it feels — he has a remarkable way of being in general.


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