France, SAM, Hindenburg discussed on The Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith
With. Sam Give it up for Christie for that Oscar. Nominations are next week so fingers crossed bats Writing for real time. What kind of what kind of rules apply for that? What kind of rules did you set yourself with these two elements of real time and a a one continuous shot? The two things do very different things to the script and actually for doing boom. You have to take everything you Norbert. Traditional additives gives both traditional screenwriting. Can Two men and threw it in the Ben. I am because otherwise you get hung up on like. Has An exciting incident happened which I think is kind of Osha Anyway. But these rules applying producers. Speak to you with these roussy. You need can understand that language but but with this so for for Ranga Film in rural team the very first you have to do the right here. Is You have to go well. Every single person in the audience experiences life in real time. They have a sense of reality. Unlike anything else when you're watching a film home traditionally with editing which is a lot of so you have to think high far. Can I push it before the audience go. And that is the huge lake title Act of film right the concept of suspension of disbelief which you have on any movie of. How far can you push the audience? So did you. Did you feel like the gas attack. was maybe a suspension title disbelief. What was just it was just how much how much are we gonna put them through before you start to go is just too fatiguing? And when I was writing at had this like M. I'm Lou Heart Monitor Kennedy thing in my head of like okay. I've had the audience probably about ninety beats per minute for a while. Now I want to take up one ten and I don't WanNa drove it back to seventy. Because because they're there's the pacing for this film was set in the script it wasn't set in the because there is no traditional aid. Then consensual these other elements that usually are the director and editors do mean just I study of like is that too much action is that too much piped and so you have to monitor this that that was the way that I have represented it in my head I was I was like Oh. My Heart's arts can recent at this but I feel like I've been running for a while I want. I want to sit down and see and I went something to the gas at low bit. At what point did you realize April six thousand nine hundred seventeen. which was the date that the English woke up to the HINDENBURG? Line also known as the HINDENBURG retreats. which was you know freaked? A lot of people out because they suddenly didn't know where the Germans were and and it was tied into the concept of delivering a message to Save Sixteen hundred people from walking into a German trap. That was at the very beginning salmon. Actually phone that we'll because because the first world war there's actually very few points in the freshmen. Where where you can tell a journey movie because it's a war where millions of people died over inches? Everything's very say everything's very in. And so some phoned this Hindenburg retreat. And this this amazing where one general woke up and was like the chairman of going. We must have one which seems like such fully. No but you could imagine having four over that land for four years three and a half years to suddenly find a empty you would think. Oh they've given up. I am not that gave us the stage detail. That true event gave us the seizure till this fabric -ation. How much research did you wind up doing for for research period? That was formal per se. Am I love to do research because research isn't writing and it's so much easier than writing. It's a good procrastination measure so it's a great presentation measure also often. You can convince people to pay for your holidays like no. It's very important Aiko there. You told me that you went to France when you you and Sam Lock your actually paid me for the IT. My own home at that time and I can tell you is absolutely harrowing. It wasn't a holiday. I am told me you brought your mom with. I'd I brought. My Mom. Took my mom because she she was like you're gonNA drive old outweigh in your own. And I was like yeah and she. We'll look I'm going to go to Paris for a holiday like why don't we drive together. And then you can come to piracy and right and I was like I'm not sounds ideal. I am then like to like D.. One of of battlefield turn my mom's just sobbing inconsolably because you're the of a fifteen year old boy like he saw unbelievably shocking. And you think okay you. Do you get through agree. Even your that might gods what waste of life and then you walk out and there's fifteen more in this one mile stretch like the cost of life over that tiny area that ribbon that ran from like you know the age of France and Germany all the way up because I I do talk ribbon. Some places it was fifty yards. They were fighting over is suitcase and death. I mean people died over inches. I'd physical inches. And if you go to Birmingham where the Canadians for a hundred years later we still have all the trenches lead over grew into their short and everything that you can walk through them with a gate and you'll point and like from here to see the the door there who'd be like see that fossilized tree and you're like yeah. He's like hundred years ago. Ten thousand men died in like four hours trying to get to that tree. And you're like what and you go and you see the Lok kindergar- creator which is it. Looks like an asteroid But it's a main creatures a bomb and they were like. Oh Yeah we think about seventy thousand people died here in a second you so you cannot fathom the cost of this war by reading it you you just you can understand like high level lund was fought over and to me that was intake to understanding for the characters especially for school food but to understand for the journey. So that very quickly your entrenches. And then you're no-man's-land your changes and then you're just adrift and this crazy landscape where people have been dreaming of getting with a think. Oh the solution to all our problems. Lie Four hundred yards that way and it's not the case it's just more death more death more Dave they were trying to push this issue out before. WJ ballots were do over break. And I know that you ended up in the city of acoust- and I was literally having having the email. The publicist over break. Because I could not figure out how to spell it. It's with an e folks. It's not an A.. Because I was looking at accent doesn't help no I was looking over all all those maps to find a coup within a send me as well I know yes we shortened clerg-clergy save me We'll so how did you come to that as the city. That was the burning city that he was going to. Because it seems like once you knew where that was you also have the concept of the river. You had the concept of the trees that they were trying to get to actually soon. None of that is there. The there isn't a river of that size acoustics. I'm an Acoust- was we picked that because that was one of the tones that the Hindenburg lane enter saved. So the Hindenburg line was literally above that tone and so we knew that that would be a battlefield but but what we were trying to do was we. Were trying to find sort of points to anchor ourselves and but not necessarily be trapped in and so we knew we knew. We wanted to a long sequence through a river. I am like that. That was vividly in Psalms. Ninety eight. Something really passionate about and there are new bake reaching rapid rivers and not part of France. Would you consider it like a Jew Geographical Geographical Prestige basically of France. Well Yeah because what we were trying to do with us film was we were trying to tail through very tiny Wendell a view in the whole war. And so you know by taking two men and by taking one D yes. You're telling that specific city bureau also trying to give away to warn what these mental went through and so we've cobbled together many different elements from different areas in France and from different true stories as well that we found during our research from Sam's but also from stories iphones and so we were trying trying to build something that fail lake. It could stand in for every month journey in the war. You had your outline. Enhance your your their boots boots on ground. You're with your mom and you told me that you started writing your script and finished it on that trip I did you had. How long was that period in my mind we had we had A? We had a very robust lane before I go to France. How many pages was that when you say sorta interesting? He's only about five pages but it was it was you'll blessed in the sense. I knew exactly what the study wasn't I knew you. The character Arcs and you the movement so it was like I knew I knew where I was I was doing and also because there's new subplots in this that there's new structurally you're very store. Yeah exactly there's there's not moving parts. The the challenge for this film was never he. If I go structure right the challenge was always like we given just the remnant of information I am so it was is very different from a traditional script and when I had that that five pages I went and I probably go to written. I had a very rough for staff. They can three weeks three. You told me three three weeks yet. But Blake Roller in that. First draft and remember finishing it and be unless isn't working and I- food and Sam and I was like. Hey I think he needs a brother. I think his brother needs to be in jeopardy jeopardy. Because you can't call a week to sixteen hundred men so they become faceless empty soldiers and whereas when you make one of them leaks brother they become a proxy for bleak and you love bleak. Hopefully I love bleak and then you want him to live. Do you know what you want. You want him to get to his brother and cater but that was the sort of the necessity of that and rather than having any of your film. School friends read it after that three weeks. You gave it to your mom. She was there she was there in the hotel room. I was like I was like shop. I'm busy busy I am a yeah I know I asked. I am confession to him. I'm a terrible speller. I'm really bad at it. I am and I love writing. But that's tricky and so I usually have someone spilled shake my work and I. It's usually the person exclusives proximity wise. I'm like hey you he you there boy what is it. We'll check this filling and so I turned her and I was like He. Could you read this before right. Send it to Sam Mendes. That's pressure I read this and Ci Raid uh-huh and she got to the you've all seen it and we're still young but she got to the moment the big moment and she turned to me and and she was crying she went. You've ruined my holiday as like high five. Because I mean that's that's the tricky wire that you're you're navigating here for so you're balancing act in which you have a very structured mission movie so you have an go to a point. Be Linear but you also need the emotional resonance throughout route. or it's just it's just D- I I am of the belief and I can assure you that salmon rozier deacons never Nelson voted in this..