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An interview with director Charlie Kaufman

posted by Susannah Breslin   Dec 23, 2015

anomalisa.jpg

Charlie Kaufman, who wrote “Being John Malkovitch” and “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and wrote and directed “Synecdoche, New York,” talks about his latest writing/now co-directing project, “Anomalisa,” which is “a stop-motion animated dark comedy about a depressed customer-service expert who falls in love on a business trip”:

Is it weird for me to say that Anomalisa contains the most realistic sex scene I’ve ever seen in a movie? Given that it’s happening between puppets?

It’s not weird. Almost everybody we speak to feels that way. We worked really hard on that scene. It took six months to shoot. We were very aware of people coming into it thinking it was going to be like Team America, that it was going to be a joke, and we didn’t want it to be [like that]. We knew there would probably be some laughing at first because it’s puppet sex. We weren’t opposed to that, but what we found is that there is the occasional laugh at that point out of nervousness, but then people get really quiet.

There’s also an interview with co-director Duke Johnson that starts, “‘There were a lot of penises,’ says Duke Johnson. ‘They break very easily because they’re tiny.’”

We Work Remotely

Trailer for Charlie Kaufman’s Anomalisa

posted by Jason Kottke   Nov 03, 2015

Seven years after his directorial debut with the fantastic Synecdoche, New York comes Charlie Kaufman’s second movie as a director, a stop-motion animated film called Anomalisa. The film successfully raised funds on Kickstarter and will be out in select theaters in December.

Charlie Kaufman and Spike Jonze getting the band back together

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 20, 2010

Well, maybe. According to the LA Times, the pair are pitching a film around that Kaufman will write and Jonze will direct.

The pair are pitching a new movie. While the plot is being kept under tight wraps — it’s a pitch, so a script has yet to be written, and Kaufman movies are famously hard to describe in a few sentences anyway — two people familiar with the project said it has been making the rounds to independent financiers in recent weeks.

If it moves forward, the film would reunite the pair in the roles that vaulted them to fame for the first time since “Adaptation” in 2002.

Tom Hanks doesn’t exist in Tom Hanks movies

posted by Jason Kottke   Apr 21, 2010

Do movie actors exist in the worlds of the movies they star in?

You ever think about how in, like, a Tom Hanks movie, everyone lives in a reality in which there’s no such person as Tom Hanks? Because otherwise, people would be mistaking the main character for Tom Hanks all the time? So either Tom Hanks doesn’t exist in the world the movie takes place in, or he does exist but he looks like someone else?

Charlie Kaufman probably has a half-written screenplay about this stuffed in a drawer somewhere. (via jimray)

Update: Dozens reminded me that the “lookie loo with a bundle of joy” scheme in Ocean’s 12 involved the pregnant Tess Ocean character (played by Julia Roberts) looking like the movie star Julia Roberts. Several other people cited this scene in The Last Action Hero. And in Take Her, She’s Mine, character played by Jimmy Stewart is repeatedly mistaken for the famous actor, Jimmy Stewart. (thx, all)

Update: TV Tropes has many many examples of this phenomenon, which they call the Celebrity Paradox. (thx, joe)

You’ve Got Mail

posted by Jason Kottke   Nov 05, 1998

Have you heard about Tom Hanks’ and Meg Ryan’s new movie, “You’ve Got Mail”? It’s just like Tom Hanks’ and Meg Ryan’s old movie, “Sleepless in Seattle”. Except with computers. They should have just called it “Sleepless in Cyberspace”.