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Hey boys and girls, what a fun time we had chatting with the gorgeous cast and fascinating director of The International.  Sit in as we discuss with stars Clive Owen, Naomi Watts and director Tom Tykwer their new action thriller  ( Reviewed here!) and why sometimes  a little romance is a dangerous thing.


Dig it!


Naomi Watts & Tom Tykwer


The Lady Miz Diva:  The International reads to me like a David vs. Goliath story.  Tom, how did you know you wanted Clive Owen for your David?

Tom Tykwer:  {Laughs} Cos heís such a giant!


LMD:  Can you both talk about the relationship that Clive and Naomiís characters have because itís very unusual that thereís no romance in the film, yet thereís this strong chemistry between them?

Naomi Watts:  We shot 9 love scenes, they didnít work.  It was just a side cut.

TT: It was just for the pleasure of me!

{All laugh}

TT:  It will be a huge DVD with 15 extra deleted scenes. 

Itís complex; I think Clive right now is just, simply speaking, the first and perfect choice for letís say what we would {sic} sillily call ďThe Thinking Manís Action Hero.Ē  I think heís just the most interesting actor of his generation that can combine this very impressive physical presence with the idea that thereís somebody who is really smart and also with the level of the dialogue and the way you feel like this guy is really thinking smartly through all this.  Heís been going through a lot of thought process here that you buy it, you know?  You donít feel like, ĎIs this guy really up to this?í You really do.

NW:  Heís empathetic, as well.  He cares.

TT:  Yes, and you kind of immediately connect with him on a level that I love so much.  Look at the sequence like the Guggenheim, itís a classic sequence where you have very often directors or filmmakers put the actors suddenly into the spot where he goes, ĎOh, he can do it and heís cool,í and all that stuff.  And of course he can do it, but he can do it out of complete panic; you can see how overwhelmed he is by situations like those, and how at the same time because heís certainly determined and his strength comes from an upsetness and a moral energy.  Itís fed by all these things that he still survives, but he also survives because heís incredibly lucky, not because heís so super cool.  And I love that, you know, heís reloading a gun and heís like shaking because itís all totally over his head.  He has never been in a situation like that.  To have somebody who easily you could imagine, ĎOkay, heís gonna shoot them all,í heís not, and he still makes it is something I think Clive can deliver better than anyone else of his generation, right now. 

And them {gesturing to Naomi}, I think itís a little bit the same.  All these films, you know, thereís all these things, all these buttons that you push usually in movies, ĎOkay, Clive and Naomi have never been in a movie together - God what a match! Okay, make them a couple. Have it all happen.í  And yet, itís one of my most beloved elements about the film that itís about adults, you know?  At a certain age, you end up not being like in the movies; always these good-looking people meet each other and they immediately fall in love and they get married.  The reality is - at least my reality is - I think we are all more or less in the same boat, is we all know we sometimes in our lives meet somebody whoís actually interesting and Iím attracted to, and that wouldíve been this other life and an option in my life.  But usually that person isnít available, or Iím not available or weíre both not available.  Weíre just not available, because weíve had a life already, weíve already taken some decisions and theyíre not even bad.  Itís not even like a large regret, itís more like the melancholy of the choices in life that we take and that of course we canít live five different lives. And thatís something that I love how they play the undertone of that.  Itís here and there a little spice.

NW:  I think that was just the thing about theÖ I mean we did shoot one scene that was an almost moment, and even that scene was very, very carefully done.  I think heís right, there are many times in life that you have those almost moments, but it doesnít happen for whatever reason, and so to put it in the movie wouldíve felt completely inauthentic and taken us out of the movie and gone, ĎYeah, this is the Clive and Naomi moment that the audience is waiting for.í  And I think we would have been lost in that moment. And thatís what I love about Tomís style is heís never giving you exactly what youíre waiting for; itís always this surprise and truth more than anything.  So, we did shoot that moment and it was in a couple of cuts, but I guess it just didnít ring true.

TT:  It wasnít even a kiss. {Laughs}

NW:  Yeah!  When I say subtle, it was just like a moment of like she leans on his shoulder and thatís it, you know? And will they kiss of will they not? They didnít. {Laughs}


Clive Owen



The Lady Miz Diva:  Thereís a ton of running, jumping climbing trees action in The International Ö

Clive Owen:  Climbing trees? Do I climb trees in this film?


LMD:  Sorry, Eddie Izzard reference.

CO:  Oh, right {laughs}


LMD:  What I mean is thereís a lot of heart-stopping action in this film, but then you have that interrogation scene with Armin Mueller-Stahl, thatís got just as much impact.  As an actor, which is more challenging, keeping true to your character while doing all that shoot Ďem up stuff, or the heavy dialogue scenes?

CO:  Theyíre kinda not too dissimilar, weirdly.  I agree with you about the scene with Armin, cos that guyÖ thatís as good acting as Iíve seen close up, really.  I think heís a really phenomenal actor, that guy.  It was just a pleasure to be able to a very big, long dialogue scene like that with him.  But in terms of the shootout, itís kind of the same things apply, basically; my job is to put people in the position of what might feel like to be in there, and itís not to run around the Guggenheim trying to look cool with a gun.  If guys came in there and started shooting guns like that, the reality is, youíd be terrified.  And itís about trying to make people feel that sort of palpable fear and intensity of what it might be actually like to be in the middle of that.  So, itís kind of the same acting instincts apply as it does for dialogue, really, youíve just gotta put people in the position youíre in and try and make them understand and believe what it is youíre doing.


LMD:  I was just discussing  the relationship between Salinger and Whitman with  Naomi Watts and Tom Tykwer and how unusual it was that thereís no romance per sť in the film, yet thereís this chemistry between you.  Were you surprised that they didnít go the expected route by involving your characters romantically?   Also, what was it like for you to have worked with Naomi for the first time?

CO:  Well, it was great working with her. Iíve known her on and off for a while and weíve nearly worked together a few times. It didnít quite happen, so it was great that finally it did.  I really rate her, I think sheís a really special, great actress and sheís a lovely girl. I mean, itís easy.  Itís easy working with her. I believe everything she does and the whole thing was a pleasure.

I was very glad that it didnít descend into clichť, really, the relationship.  I think that they are a partnership. There is an attraction there, but itís kind of based on their work ethic, really, and their pursuit of the bank.  And I think it would have been a sort of obvious and clichť thing to do to descend into a typical romance.  I think itís a very delicately well-pitched relationship and I was happy that we didnít do the obvious.


LMD:  Naomi and Tom did say there were 9 hot love scenes that were cut out that are gonna show up on DVD.

CO: {Laughs}



~ The Lady Miz Diva

Feb 9th, 2009


Click here to read our Review of The International.




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Exclusive Clive Owen photos by LMD

Stills and Red Carpet Courtesy of  Sony Pictures







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