Duncan Jones tells Empire 'On this one I've got four really talented actors - Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga, Jeffrey Wright. It's a new test, a new experience...'
Jake Gyllenhaal was apparently the one 'who pushed him to board the sci-fi thriller'.
Duncan describes Jake Gyllenhaal's character briefly as 'a military man who wakes up on a train not knowing how he got there. Before he gets a chance to work it out, things change in such a dramatic way, he doesn't know whether the train's real or not...When it was brought to me it was serious, quite cerebral, dark and depressing, My take was, "This could actually be quite fun..."'
The director also tells us of Paul Hirsch (editor) and how he is 'thrilled to be working with him'. However it was Paul Hirsch who called Duncan the genius after suggesting something during the editing process, which made his year.
...appeared at Comic Con a few weeks ago. Not quite sure what it is,early promo material perhaps.
Off topic (sort of) I went to a screening of Moon at the BFI on tuesday. As a bonus there was an entertaining Q & A afterwards with Duncan Jones, Gavin Rothery (Concept artist and VFX supervisor), Hideki Arichi (Art Director) and Barrett Heathcode, VFX Editor. A year after release Moon still filled 450 seats (quickly too, after being upgraded from NFT2 to NFT1) which gives you an idea of the growing popularity of this film, and it will continue to grow. If you want to watch the Q&A it has been uploaded at the blog MovieBrit. Again huge thanks to WDW for this.
Last week Duncan did an email interview for the blog Manmademovies. There's a large section on Source Code.
Well worth a read. This blog is very good for those who liked Moon and are interested in any future work by Duncan Jones!
"Back in January, you blogged here at the start of the Source Code process. Can you tell us a bit about how it all panned out after that, the experience of working, the learning experience, the cast, managing a second unit in Chicago etc?
It has been a seismic shift on how I would normally work, but I think I have adjusted ok. It all makes complete sense, when you think about it. With more money, there is more caution, more advice, more suggestion, and over the course of making the film, I had to keep reminding myself that I was asked to direct the film because the people in charge trusted my choices. I think that was the real turning point. At first it was a little over whelming, being second-guessed so much, but I educated myself fast, and fortunately I was supported by the incredibly gracious and talented Jake G, who really got behind me and trusted my instincts. It would have been easy to lose my perspective, with so many others being offered.
Edit started May 17th on SC, how has that whole experience been, moving to LA, working with a legend like Paul Hirsch?
Now there is a perspective I can live with! Paul Hirsch is right up there as a major part of modern US cinema history. If they ever carve a Mount Rushmore to film people, his face should be up there… If you dont know who he is, and you work in film, shame on you! Star Wars. Empire Strikes Back. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Ray, Mission Impossible… to name a few. Look him up, but dont look him in the eye! He is too brilliant for the likes of us to gaze upon!
Where are you at with the edit process now, we’re obviously starting to get people asking when they are going to see a trailer, whether there is a release date yet, etc?
Well, I think it is safe to say that the film will be out early next year. My edit is complete, and we are working hard on visual effects, choosing a composer and trying the film out on a few people just to see how it goes over. Lots to do really, but everything is coming together, and I am in the capable hands of Paul “Mount Rushmore” Hirsch!
To date, we have seen no (official) footage, or even a single still from SC, is this a conscious thing? More & more films these days seem to start releasing promotional material earlier & earlier in the process.
Absolutely. We showed a lot early, on Moon. People knew more than they should have just by watching the trailer. I think for a small film like Moon, it was probably the right move, but this film is a little bigger, and I think we can afford to hold our cards a little closer to our chest. I feel much more comfortable with that, because it means that when we DO release stuff, we will have had a chance to really work on it, think it through and make sure it really gives everyone a good sense of what we are trying to make. Source Code is very different than Moon… its quite a bit different from a lot of films, to be honest, and Im hoping when we are ready to show people, the patience will pay off.
We’re all REALLY looking forward to Source Code, especially after the great feedback from Jake Gyllenhaal while being interviewed on PoP promotional tour, if you could take a step back, like Worzel Gummidge, and pop on an audience head, what would you think of what you have all achieved?
Too close to it, to be honest! I know that performance-wise we got some great stuff from Jake, Michelle, Vera and Jeffrey. I know that the script was always tight, and the film has a hell of a fast pace to it. I know that I did my best to inject some humor where I could. But other than that, we float, helpless in the post-production maelstrom right now!
A unique score can add so much to the experience of watching a film, any news on who may score Source Code (Obv we are hoping for more Mansell magic)
Not yet! We are RIGHT in the middle of that process though, so watch this space. As soon as it gets nailed down, Ill be twittering about it like a monkey with the last banana on the shelf."
As there is no new news about Source Code I thought I would do a post about the actor who plays the main character of the film, Colter.
Jake is 29 years old, son to Screenwriter Naomi Foner and Director Stephen Gyllenhaal and brother to actress Maggie Gyllenhaal. Jake made his acting debut in City Slickers aged 11 playing Billy Crystal's son. Following that he made October Sky and Donnie Darko (2001), with many saying the latter was his breakout role.
Jake followed Donnie Darko with Bubble Boy and The Good Girl opposite Jennifer Aniston in 2002. In 2004 Jake starred in The Day After Tomorrow. Following this Jake starred This is Our Youth on the West End.
In 2005 Jake did three films: Proof, Jarhead and Brokeback Mountain, receiving a Bafta for the third.
In 2007 Jake starred in Zodiac directed by David Fincher and Rendition. In 2009 Jake was in Brothers with Natalie Portman and Tobey Maguire. This received good reviews but didn't make a lot of money. Prince of Persia was announced in 2008 and this was a shock to most people as Jake was not really seen as an action star, but more of the sensitive/troubled type. However, after seeing Jake in this role I really respect him for taking a risk because he certainly surpassed my expectations and was brilliant in the role. I'm not an expert on box office numbers but it's safe to say the film did not flop. Jake himself said he wanted to do something that was "fun" and that's definitely what this movie was. Coming up next Jake has Love and Other Drugs directed by Ed Zwick starring Anne Hathaway which already has oscar buzz surrounding it.
Jake's character in Source Code is called Colter and he is a soldier who wakes up in the body of a commuter. That's pretty much all I know about his character so far.
To begin, here is a positive review of the script by Carson Reeves at the Script Shadow blog.
He sums up by saying: "I can't stress how perfectly executed this script was. No scene was wasted. Everything was go go go. I have no doubt that the similarities to Deja Vu have thrown the chances of this thing ever getting into production into jeopardy. But let me make a plea to whoever owns this property: MAKE THIS MOVIE. Cast an up and coming actor. There are only a few locations. Very cheap to make. Then spend a ton on marketing. It will open with 10 mil but word of mouth will carry it. This can be a sci-fi classic."
Spoiler Warning: don't read the comments. However, the feedback is overwhelmingly positive.
Source Code was originally written by Ben Ripley and got a revision from Billy Ray (Flight Plan, State of Play) Script Shadow interviewed Ben Ripley on February 9th 2010.
"Why did you write Source Code?
BR: I wrote Source Code because I was discouraged with the work I was then getting. In the four years between the sale of my first spec and that of Source Code, I was mostly doing rewrites on other people’s horror scripts. I’d put a lot of effort into them, I’d get paid, and then the scripts would just sit there. I felt I had more to say creatively, and the great thing about being a writer in Hollywood, the source of our power, is the ability to generate new material..."
"Did you know Source Code was going to click with people? Were you sitting there going, “This one feels good,” as you were writing it? Or was it a total surprise?
BR: Six months before we went out with it, the Mark Gordon people knew it was going to sell. I was way too skittish to go around saying or believing that myself, but we all had a feeling the script could be something special. I should also point out that we didn’t stop with a draft that would sell. No one aspires anymore to just a development deal. We kept pushing to until I had a draft that would be made. There’s a difference, and with a spec script, you have the luxury of incubating it until it’s as strong as you think you can make it. Although I’ve written several scripts since Source Code that, to me, felt pretty strong, Source Code remains the most popular with people."
"Can you tell us what you think the key is to writing a good sci-fi script?
BR: Put character first. Don’t let the technology take over the story. Center your narrative on an emotional experience and let the science part of it be the ambience. None of the characters in your script should be aware that they’re in a science fiction film. It should be all utterly real to them."
Much more here. I do recommend reading, it's very interesting!