Zvyagintsev on his new film Leviathan
Andrey Zvyagintsev gives his first thoughts of his upcoming film Leviathan.
The famous director Andrei Zvyagintsev rarely gives interviews and even more rarely talks about upcoming projects. So there was no information about the film that is currently shooting and will be titled Leviathan. During the award ceremony of KinoSoyuz, where he was awarded with the Elem award for his last film Elena, he gave an interview to the Russian newspaper Trud and here is a rough sum up of that.
Zvyagintsev said that now he works like Chekhov, he is preparing one film after another and he is still thinking of the next one. His films come rarely once every four years and that pace is not totally controlled by him but this is due to different budget and production problems. He started his new project, Leviathan last July with Elena‘s producer Alexander Rodnyansky. For this year he is planning to continue shooting from August till October in the northern town of Kirovsk on the Kola Peninsula near Murmansk. Till then he is preparing the script and he is training his actors.
Even if he doesn’t like to share information about his films the director unveiled that the film will be a drama gradually melted into tragedy. The script begins as a social drama, a relationship drama, a drama of human insecurity in the new country. Hopefully, the picture will not carry a narrowly national but rather a universal content. Also the story itself is tied to the present day; it is rooted in the familiar pain of the reality. The film will feature the most current social problems. It will also be unusually crowded compared to Elena since there will be six or seven main characters and overall more than 15 characters, all of them of great importance. The film is set to be ready in the spring of 2014 and he is trying to make it to the limited running time of 130 minutes.
Andrei Zvyagintsev also revealed that there are three more scenarios on his desk ready to be shot. One of them is on the Second World (Great Patriotic) War and it is consisted of three short stories, collected in full length. The plan got him really worried since there are stories of real people. The other scenario dates back to Kievan Rus’ era, a period set in the middle ages.
The journalist finally asked him whether he wants to shoot a comedy, which brought to the director Leonid Gaidai fame and popularity. Zvyagintsev replied again quoting Chekhov and how he described his works The Seagull and The Cherry Orchard as comedies. He also explained that his nature is to see the world in tragic tones and comedy is not his style. He finally replied to the journalist that he should imagine what Leonid Gaidai would have thought if a journalist asked him why he didn’t shoot Hamlet!