Of all the films shown in Venice, Luc Besson was the one where the filmmakers were probably more nervous than others awaiting press reaction after the first press screening dog man. Dubbed by the media as the director’s “comeback” film, the dark thriller – starring Caleb Landry Jones (and about 70 dogs) – is his first feature film behind the camera since 2019 ann and the first after his career took a detour following rape allegations cleared by a French judge last year. Not that Besson sees it dog man this way.
“You don’t think like that,” he said THR to the question of whether dog man was his comeback film and claimed he was just continuing to work in the hope that what he was writing would be good enough to continue being made into a film.
“It’s really hard when you turn 60 because you never know when you’ve run out of juice. An athlete knows it – he has a chronometer. But you never know with an artist,” he said. “I never want to do a film too many times and people say, ‘Oh, it was great before.’ So try to figure out if you have anything else to say, and for now I’m fine. So maybe I have one or two more.”
dog man may contain some of the same action and comedy elements of Besson’s previous feature films, but many have noted how the film – at least in relation to Landry Jones’ character – pushes the director into darker, more emotional territory, which he says is a result of the Growth was as a filmmaker.
“I did my first film when I was 19 and now I’m 63 so it took me 50 years to find the focus and I think I can express myself a little better and maybe know a little better what I want to say.” So it’s just a normal development. But I try to be more interesting. But for me it’s not dark at all, it’s very colourful.”
In nearly 50 years of filmmaking, Dogman also marks Besson’s first film to compete at a major festival.
“We are very flattered and the competition this year is great. It’s a year to be happy to lose because everyone is good,” he said.
While Besson’s off-screen concerns have grabbed much of the headlines in recent years, he claims he’s not worried about whether or not they might impact Dogman’s success. “It’s not my problem. I’m here to paint – I paint my picture,” he said.
Given the reception dog man received from both press screenings ahead of Thursday’s premiere, and the enthusiastic applause Besson received at the press conference (where he notes that two journalists couldn’t even ask questions “because they were crying”), even if he doesn’t when one does Seeing the film as his comeback, audiences, at least in Venice, seem quite ready to see more of the director’s films. And although the highly ambitious 2017 novel Valerian is a huge box-office flop, one could imagine a return to big-budget sci-fi.
“I would like to do another film in space,” he said. “Give me $200 million and I’m there.”
Source : www.hollywoodreporter.com