Uma Thurman on Producing Paul Schrader's Cannes Film 'Oh, Canada': 'I Had a Strong Feeling That it Was Very Personal for Him' - Latest Global News

Uma Thurman on Producing Paul Schrader’s Cannes Film ‘Oh, Canada’: ‘I Had a Strong Feeling That it Was Very Personal for Him’

Uma Thurman has been to Cannes more times than she can remember, either to pledge her support for the glamorous annual charity event amfAR or with films as varied as the genteel Merchant Ivory-era film The Golden Bowl (2000) and Quentin Tarantino’s Ultraviolent Kill Bill: Volume 2 (2004), in which she reprized her badass role as The Bride. The film that made her a star pulp FictionShe won the Palme d’Or there, and Thurman hasn’t forgotten what that meant to her. This year she is back with Paul Schrader Oh, Canadathe kind of smart, character-driven indie that earned her her stripes.

DEADLINE: How did you get involved? Oh, Canada?

UMA THURMAN: Actually, I just got a call from my agents to read a script by Paul Schrader and meet with him. I’m so glad I did it. I love Paul Schrader.

DEADLINE: Did you already know him?

THURMAN: No, I didn’t know him. I mean, I’ve definitely been in a room with him here or there. But no, I didn’t know him. Now I do it and I feel even better.

DEADLINE: What fascinated you about it?

THURMAN: The script. I think it’s probably filmed more clearly than on the page. It was such an unusual read. I mean, I’ve read some of the more unusual scripts that have been written in my life, and this was definitely very, very unusual.

RELATED: Cannes Film Festival Photos Day 2: Meryl Streep, Faye Dunaway and ‘Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga’

DEADLINE: How would you describe it?

THURMAN: It is the reverie of a man in the final moments of his life, reconstructing the narrative of what was important to him, reassessing who he is – and was – and the content of his life. But it’s also a very lyrical, loose, poetic kind of dream state illusion. So I found it more confusing written down than on the screen. Paul’s cinematic signature has of course prevailed and brought this kind of illusionary dream together into something that leaves you with the strong impression of a story.

Uma Thurman at the Cannes Film Festival

Rocco Spanziani/Archivio Spaziani/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

DEADLINE: Can you tell us something about your character?

THURMAN: I play a woman who has dedicated her life to documentary filmmaking. She married her professor, played by Richard Gere. She dated him and had great success. That’s why she is married to an older man whom she passionately adores and who is dying of cancer. He is, so to speak, her mentor, partner and husband all in one. She is there with him as he comes to terms with the end of his life. I don’t think there’s a spoiler alert about it being the end of his life.

DEADLINE: What kind of shoot was that? It seems very intimate…

THURMAN: Well, just the presence of a master like Paul Schrader on a set of any size is as noticeable as, I don’t know, a warm wind. It’s like the wind that hits you when you get off a plane in the tropics. There is only one of this kind, and he is something of a master. You could really be anywhere; You can’t miss it.

RELATED: Cannes Film Festival 2024: All the film reviews from Deadline

As I watched him put this piece together, I had a strong feeling that it was very personal to him, knowing that he was very good friends with Russell Banks, the author of the book it is based on . I don’t remember exactly how it worked out, but I know it was the book meant be called Oh, Canadabut it was released at least in North America, as Waived, I believe. You can fact check me [laughs]. I think I’m right, but I’m not stubborn about correctness.

But in any case there was something very sweet, sad and beautiful about their friendship; Russell and Paul were very close-knit, tight-knit friends. I believe that this was the last book that Russell Banks wrote, as he himself was going through, or was on the verge of, a similar phase in his own life and the end of his life. I couldn’t say whether Paul would call him a best friend or one of his best friends or one of his closest friends, but to me it felt like a dear friend expressing the final work of a very dear friend who thinks about a life in fiction. That’s a long explanation, but I think that’s the beauty of it for me.

DEADLINE: What conversations did you have with Paul about the film? It seems there is a lot to debate and discuss there.

THURMAN: Oh, I couldn’t give a general answer to that. I read the book, talked to Paul and somehow understood his feelings towards the author. I didn’t think there were really things to discuss with him. It’s about a man writing about another man’s lived experience, told in a fictional narrative.

DEADLINE: What’s interesting, though, is that it’s about a documentary filmmaker debunking his own myths. It’s about getting to the bottom of the truth and asking: What is the truth anyway? Your character says at one point, “I know everything I need to know.” What does that mean to you in terms of the idea of ​​reality versus filmed reality?

THURMAN: Well, I think that there may be an underlying theme to this character, an idea that there are truths, and then there are many facts, and sometimes facts can be contradictory, but there may still be some higher truths that contradictory facts will not be abused by anyone. I think that the character of the woman saying, “I know everything I need to know,” is her way of saying, “Yes, there are a lot of contradictions, but I know that I Am loved, and me Do Love, and me Was loved.” So her trust in this greater truth doesn’t mean… It means she doesn’t let the things that contradict her, the facts, slow her down. [Pause]. Perhaps.

DEADLINE: Have you ever worked with Richard Gere?

THURMAN: With Richard? In 1991, when I was a child, I played Kim Basinger’s younger sister in a film called Final analysis.

Uma Thurman interview

Thurman in pulp Fiction.

Miramax/Everett Collection

DEADLINE: But you haven’t worked together since then?

THURMAN: No no. So that’s funny. It was a very nice cast. There’s Michael Imperioli, who’s great. We went to his Broadway debut last night, enemy of the people. Basically, Paul attracts very inspired and inspiring people. He has very good taste.

DEADLINE: In people or in materials?

THURMAN: In all things. His legacy is essentially one of the cornerstones of American cinema.

DEADLINE: He never does the same thing twice. Well, he does make similar films sometimes, but he doesn’t rest on his laurels. Do you have a particular favorite of his?

THURMAN: I don’t know. We talked about it Cat people last night.

I think the fact that he doesn’t actually make the same movie twice is probably why he has a 50 year career. You can’t make the same film over and over again. You cannot per se pass on the same cup of tea to several generations. I think it’s because of his vast knowledge and incredibly perceptive view of the human mind. He is something very special.

DEADLINE: What’s next for you?

THURMAN: I’m going to Cannes and after that I don’t know. When everyone went on strike, I simply cooled down. I haven’t figured out what I’m going to do next yet.

Read the digital edition of Deadline’s Disruptors/Cannes magazine here.

DEADLINE: Are you looking forward to Cannes? You must have been there a few times now.

THURMAN: I have.

DEADLINE: It’s been 30 years pulp Fiction. What memories do you have of this event?

THURMAN: Oh, it was extraordinary. I wish I had been there. I was filming something else, so I wasn’t there when it won. It’s really sad and unfortunate that I couldn’t be there for the win.

DEADLINE: What do you think Cannes means to you?

THURMAN: It’s really something special. I mean, I’ve had so many films play at the festival. I can’t remember how many entered the competition or premiered there, I’ve lost count, but I think if not, it’s one of the most extraordinary film events left in the world The most notably.

Sharing Is Caring:

Leave a Comment