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Hey kids, we just had a blast at New York Comic Con attending the press day for the upcoming actioner Hanna, directed by Joe Wright (- Best known for 2007ís Oscar-nominated Atonement) and starring the lovely Eric Bana and the excellent Saoirse RonanLMD had a chance to chime with a query or two about what sounds like a must-see in 2011.

Dig It!

 

Hanna - New York Comic Con Preview

Eric Bana, Saoirse Ronan and director Joe Wright 

The Lady Miz Diva:  Mr. Wright, I admire the long tracking shots weíve seen in your films Pride and Prejudice and Atonement.  Will there be one in Hanna?  What was your inspiration for including the tracking shot in your films?

Joe Wright:  There was a British director called Alan Clarke, who you maybe know of, Clarkey as he was known, who started working with steadicam in television in the early eighties.  A film called Elephant {1989}, which was then the film that inspired Gus Van Santís Elephant {2003}, was all shot with 18 single takes, steadicam shots.  So I loved his work and then I saw Russian Ark {2002}, as well, which is a 90-minute single take steadicam shot through the St. Petersberg Hemitage gallery.  Thatís a great film.  In fact, we worked with that steadicam operator on Hanna.  And then to be honest, thereís a kind of element of necessity being the mother of invention; the very last scene of Charles II {2003}, which is a TV thing I did before I did Pride and Prejudice, I wanted to set at dusk and it involved about 27 characters, about 10 or 12 of whom talked and a lot of separate conversations and it needed to be shot at dusk and I didnít know how I was going to break it down.  And so then I thought, well I could just cheat and not break it down at all, but do it all in one shot and rehearse it all day and do it like a piece of theatre, basically.  And so that started a kind of love affair with the steadicam shot.

And then in Hanna, thereís a few nice steadicam shots Ö I think.  We kinda went to town on it, but one in particular -- my favourite -- is a shot that I think is longer than the one in Atonement, although it doesnít seem so grand, perhaps, is a fight with Eric and four CIA agents.  So it starts with Eric getting off a bus, moving through the bus station, coming outside being followed by these CIA agents, going down an escalator into an underground car park and then a kind of quite vicious fight that takes placeÖ

Eric Bana: No pressure.

{All laugh}

JW:  ÖAnd that was really scary for Eric and he did incredibly with it.  I like to challenge my cast and crewÖ

EB:  I nearly cried that morning.

JW: {Laughs} Sorry.  Heís brilliant.  The fight went really, really well.  Also, I love the fight in OldBoy {2003}, thatís one of the most amazing fight sequences Iíve ever seen.  I was very wary of working with Jeff Imada; I worked with him specifically because I think the fight sequences in the Bourne films are extraordinary, but I was very nervous; I wanted to get away from the style of fighting of those films thatís become very popular now.  Iím not even sure that Paul Greengrass can shoot five sequences like that anymore because theyíve become so copied.  So I wanted to get away from the very cutty style and so I went in the opposite direction and went into single takes.

 

LMD:  Do you feel youíve got to include one of those shots in each of your films?  Theyíve kind of become your signature.

JW:  No, I donít. And in The Soloist we didnít really have any.

 

LMD:  Yes you did, through the homeless settlement. 

JW:  Well, yeah, yeah, a bit, but we cut it, too.  I certainly donít feel like I have to maintain the single takes anymore.  I kind of cut into them a bit now, whereas with the Atonement one, I didnít cut into it at all.

 

 

~ The Lady Miz Diva

Oct 9th, 2010

 

Click here for our Hanna movie review.

Click here for our coverage of the Hanna NYC Junket.

 

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Photos

Exclusive Photo by LMD

Film still courtesy of Focus Features

 

 

 

 

 

 

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