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The Hollywood Reporter has released its first Venice Film Festival digital daily issue, which features a discussion with Paul Schrader about Venice entry The Card Counter, a look into Maggie Gyllenhaal’s directorial debut, Edgar Wright detailing what it was like to film Last Night in Soho during lockdown, among others.
“Man in a Room” Existential Thriller
The last time prolific filmmaker and legendary screenwriter Paul Schrader was stepping off a vaporetto in Venice, the city had just served as the scene of his late-career critical resurrection. Schrader’s 21st film as a director, the searing existential thriller First Reformed, premiered at the 2017 edition of the Venice Film Festival to near-unanimous acclaim, with critics hailing it a masterful culmination of the obsessions coursing through his nearly five decades in the movies. Schrader returns to the competition program in Venice this year with the latest man in a room iteration, The Card Counter. Ahead of The Card Counter‘s Venice premiere on Sept. 2, THR connected with Schrader to discuss his perennial interest in all flavors of disaffected loners and how the pandemic ultimately helped him make a better movie.
Maggie Gyllenhaal: The Director
It was while working together on 2018’s The Kindergarten Teacher, her first feature effort as producer, that Maggie Gyllenhaal floated to her Pie Films producing partners Osnat Handelsman-Keren and Talia Kleinhendler her desire to direct. She zeroed in on Elena Ferrante’s 2006 novella The Lost Daughter, a story about a literature professor from the U.K. on a summer holiday who, after befriending a young mother, grapples with the fraught parenting of her own daughters and the guilt-ridden realization that she feels liberated now that they’re adults. THR takes a look into Gyllenhaal’s first time moving behind the camera and how doing so six months into a global pandemic made it something of a gamble.
“An Emotional Journey in A Lot of Ways”
One of the most hotly anticipated films to see its release schedule repeatedly ripped to shreds due to the pandemic, Focus Features’ psychological horror Last Night in Soho is finally making its bow in Venice, nearly a full year after it originally was due to come out. It’s the end of an emotional journey for director Edgar Wright, who first began dreaming up the idea — a time-twisting tale about a young fashion student (played by Thomasin McKenzie) who is transported back to the 1960s and into the body of a singer (Anya Taylor-Joy) — more than a decade ago as an homage to London’s legendary central neighborhood. Speaking to THR ahead of the film’s world premiere in Venice, the British filmmaker discusses shooting a film in one of the busiest parts of London (mostly in the dead of night, while the city slept), spotting Taylor-Joy while on the Sundance jury and why he felt it was important to turn down major studio offers in order to make his original movie.
Click here to download THR‘s Venice Day 1 Digital Daily.
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