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Sunday, September 25, 2022

TIFF: Steven Spielberg Says Pandemic Made Him Realize ‘The Fabelmans’ was a Film He Had to “Get Out of Me Now”

20220925 145031
20220925 145031

The morning after Steven Spielberg fablemans It was the film’s world premiere in Toronto — a show that instantly propelled the film to critics’ top film lists this awards season — the director and his crew sat down to talk about the film with festival CEO Cameron Bailey.

The film tells the story of Spielberg’s early life in Arizona after World War II and the first flashes of filmmaking insight combined with family trauma. and Michelle Williams, Seth Rogan and Judd Hirsch.

“I thought it would be a lot easier than it turns out because I’ve definitely known the material and all the characters my whole life,” Spielberg said alongside co-writer Tony Kushner at Sunday’s press conference. “However, I found this to be a very harrowing experience for me, because I was trying in a semi-experimental way to re-create huge memories, not only in my life but in the lives of my three sisters and my mom and dad who are no longer with us. The responsibility for that just started to build up.”

Spielberg added, “As the cast knows, this was a very difficult experience emotionally. Not all of that, but it was really hard to get into part of it.”

In a similar way to Kenneth Branagh and his semi-autobiography BelfastSpielberg said he was urged to write fablemans from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I remember, as the death toll rose, we kept watching reports of what was happening across the country and the world and I kept thinking, ‘What would this mean to humanity? How far will this pandemic actually take us? And I kept thinking, ‘Well, if I’m going to tell a story I’ve always wanted to tell about coming of age in this very unique family with such a unique mom and dad, it might be the best time, with all the time I’ve had, to sit with Tony and I decide to write this on Zoom together because I didn’t know where this was going. And I thought, “This is something I have to get out of me now.”

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Dano, who plays a fictional version of Spielberg’s father in fablemansThere was a special feeling on the set, he said, that came from having a lead director opening himself up in ways he never had before.

“I felt there was some kind of spell in the darkness, and I think a lot of that came from Stephen’s vulnerability and openness, and in seeing someone like him put themselves out there that way,” he explained. “And I could feel, I think, among the whole crew, the stakes were high in a really good way. And I think it was inspiring to see the artists push themselves – again, by putting themselves out there in that kind of a bare-bones way – and I think that in the end It is a real gift.”

In portraying LaBelle as his teenage self, Spielberg joked that he was mostly interested in aesthetics.

“I wanted to have someone who was really good looking and sexy,” he said. “It is Canada.”

After the show on Saturday night, audiences inside the Princess of Wales Theater gave the film such an extended welcome that TIFF CEO Cameron Bailey had to ask everyone to sit down so they could start the Q&A.

The night before the movie’s world premiere, the movie got such a standing ovation that TIFF CEO Cameron Bailey had to ask people to sit down so they could start the Q&A.

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