Going to be doing a Twitter Q and A in 20 mins for release on @iTunes . All welcome
Don’t know the ‘Circle of Friends’ but definitely ‘The Government Inspector’ and ‘Darkness at Noon.’
The spoiler alert’s in the title. I cast early, as we were writing the second and third draft, so we knew who we were writing for. Also we rehearse early with the cast as we’re writing. That way, each part is moulded round the actor.
I did have Simon Russell Beale in mind from the start as Beria , the dark source of terror that runs all the way through.
Always show what feels true. You can’t make something funny just by adding a gag; the comedy has to arise out of the situation. If the story is absurd, play it for real. The more true it feels, the more absurd and funnier it becomes.
A little. I encourage it during the rehearsal process. Less of it as we shoot, ( it’s difficult to improvise with a thousand mourners) but we try to feed what came up in rehearsals into the shooting script.
Death of Khrushchev. Death of Brezhnev. Etc etc. It’s the ‘Death of..’ Universe
Quad, the French producers, sent it to me. It’s as simple as that. They said ‘you should make this.’ I read it and instantly said ‘yes!’ It couldn’t have been a faster or smoother process.
I rewatched Chaplin’s ‘The Great Dictator’ which he made in 1941 which is very funny but also doesn’t hide Hitler’s anti-semitism or what the Nazis represented .