Rust and Bone: Marion Cotillard, Matthias Schoenaerts and Director Jacques Audiard Share Some Thoughts and Facts
Rust and Bone is possibly one of the most beautiful films you’ll see this year (you can read my review here).
Recently, the two stars of the film Marino Cotillard, Matthias Schoenaerts, along with director/writer Jacques Audiard and writer Thomas Bidegain took part in a press conference to talk about the movie. So whether you want to know more about the film after seeing it or before going to see it, here are some of the highlights from the insightful conversation.
To Marion Cotillard: On The Challenges of Playing Her Character
Marion Cotillard explained that she never sees a challenge, but that it’s an exploration of a story. What was different with this movie was that when she read the script, even at the end of it, her character Stéphanie was still a mystery to her. She continued to say that usually when she works, she needs to explore every bit of a character, but she realized that that specific mystery was not to be solved entirely because it was part of who the character was.
In terms of CGI, Cotillard explained that the fact she had legs was never an issue (she wore green socks and which allowed the visual effects artist to remove them during post-production). Sometimes she had to position them in a weird way so that they wouldn’t cast shadows, but she described the CGI guys as “really talented and really fast and really discreet.”
Cotillard also explained that the most difficult part for her was going to Marineland because she’s not comfortable in a place like that. On the first day she thought it was horrifying when the animals would do what she asked them to.
On Connecting with the Whale
One of the most powerful scenes in the movie featuring Stéphanie in front of the aquarium glass calling on the whale was totally improvised. There was no choreography either. They started shooting and Marion Cotillard tried calling the whale not knowing whether or not it would come. When it did appear, she used a few of the commands she had learned and the whale responded to them. Cotillard explained that she had a real communication with the whale for the first time that day.
To Jacques Audiard: On Why He Decided to Make Rust and Bone
Audiard explained that what came first was his “desire to tell a love story.” His previous film, Un prophète (A Prophet) had no light or no space and mainly featured men, and so Audiard explained that with writer Thomas Bidegain, they wanted to tell a love story of light, of space. And so he used the short story by Craig Davidson as a setting and created a love story in that universe.
On Their Hardest Scene
The most emotional scene for Marion Cotillard was the scene after her character makes love to Ali for the first time. She’s in bed and Cotillard explained that she felt something that she had never felt before, she felt very moved by her character because she was going to live something very special and she was so happy for her.
For Matthias Schoenaerts, the hardest scene was one they shot three times. It was a phone call his character had to make and he didn’t manage to do it right. However, the most emotional scene for him was one in the hospital where he reveals a very genuine and profound emotion for the first time.
For Jacques Audiard the hardest scene was the one where Ali hits his kid. He didn’t like shooting it. He explained that it was difficult because even though they explained to the actor playing Sam, Armand Verdure, that Matthias was going to scream at him, he started really crying because he built a relationship with Matthias.
The most surprising scene for him was the one with Marion Cotiallard in front of the aquarium mentioned above, because they didn’t know what was going to happen.
To Matthias Schoenaerts: On His Training For The Film
Schoenaerts shared that Audiard wanted him to grow a belly because he wanted him to look strong but not too fit. So he ate “a lot of crap.”
On Working With Jacques Audiard
Marion Cotillard explained that they would seek authenticity and on set they would try different things and the way they would end up going was richer in the end. The “experience of the journey towards this authenticity” was very interesting to her.
Matthias Schoenaerts shared that cinema is a living art and that the set is not where they executed what they thought. Instead it is a “place where things start to live, everything is unexpected, it’s a permanent exchange or ideas.”
– The tattoos on Stéphanie’s legs are an homage to Night of the Hunter.
– One day Jacques Audiard told Marion Cotillard that her character was a “cowboy.” Cotillard thought it was genius and from there everything found its place.
Rust and Bones opens to theaters in New York today, November 23rd and will open in Los Angeles on December 7th.. You can watch the trailer here.