RICHARD LINKLATER’S 24 HOUR FILM CHALLENGE FAILS
HOLLYWOOD – Boyhood and Before Midnight director, Richard Linklater has failed in his attempt to script, shoot, edit and release a feature film within 24 hours.
Speaking EXCLUSIVELY with the Studio Exec, Linklater complained:
There simply wasn’t enough time. I mean twenty four hours to write a script is already pushing it, but to film the script, edit it and have it show in movie theaters…? It was a foolhardy attempt to say the least.
Why did you accept the challenge?
I was drunk and it was Michael Haneke who told me I couldn’t do it. He kept saying ‘Linklater’s a slowdy coach.’ His English isn’t great. And anyway I’m not having the asshole who made Funny Games twice tell me what I can and cannot do.
Is it true he also made disparaging remarks about your hair?
Yes, it is. And he’s Austrian for crying out loud. Austrian! The country that invented bad hair.
What was the film going to be about?
It was called Day Care and it was a bout this young guy (Chris Pine) who is working in a day care center and there’s this old lady, played by Judi Dench and a kind of gentle unlikely friendship evolves over the course of the day.
How far did you get with the film?
Well, I decided that if I was going to do it, I needed to cut out some parts of the film making process, so I dumped the script once I had the synopsis and decided the whole thing would be improvised. Luckily Chris Pine doesn’t have much experience acting so he was fine with that. And Judi was very game. We filmed for eight hours and I though we had it in the bag so we rushed over to the editing suite. Everything was digital and I had a minimum of takes, mostly just the one take for each scene.
And so you stalled in editing?
No, we put together a rough assembly and then watched it through tweaking her and there. And at the same time I was adding music that our composer was improvising on a range of instruments we’d brought in for him.
So the film was completed?
No, unfortunately not. You see, as soon as I saw the film in its complete form I realized that the story was incomplete. Yes, we know what happens to Chris and Judi on this day, but for us to be true to the characters I wanted to know what happened to them for the next twenty years and given our limitations – imposed on us by Haneke – I decided to surrender rather than release something I couldn’t live with.
So you’re going to take the time and complete the film?
No, I deleted all of it. And I have to wear a t-shirt that Haneke sent me which has writing saying ‘I’m a foolish head’ with an arrow that points up to the wearer, that is me.
Day Care will never be seen.