Director Michaël R. Roskam Talks THE DROP, Casting James Gandolfini and Tom Hardy, Deleted Scenes, Future Projects, and More at TIFF 2014

     September 9, 2014

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Opening this weekend is director Michaël R. Roskam’s (Bullhead) The Drop.  In the film Tom Hardy plays Bob, a former criminal and current bartender working at a bar that serves as a money “drop” for local gangsters.  James Gandolfini plays his cousin/employer.  The story kicks into gear when Hardy’s character rescues a pit bull puppy only to become the target of the dog’s abusive and mentally unstable former owner.  At the same time, Hardy and Gandolfini find themselves in the crosshairs of an investigation and the criminal underworld.  Mystic River and Shutter Island author Dennis Lehane penned the screenplay.  The impressive cast also includes Noomi RapaceMatthias Schoenaerts, John OrtizAnn Dowd, and James Frecheville.

A few days ago at the Toronto International Film Festival I landed an exclusive video interview with Michaël Roskam.  He talked about being at TIFF, his first cut of the film, deleted scenes, casting Gandolfini, Hardy and Rapace, if his next project will be in America or Belgium, how he’s developing an HBO series with Michael Mann and Mark Johnson, and a lot more.  Hit the jump to watch.

the-drop-michael-roskamMichaël R. Roskam Time Index:

  • Talks about what it means to him that The Drop is playing TIFF.
  • 1:35 – Discusses the differences between the theatrical cut of the film and his first cut.  The assembly cut was 3 hours and 20 minutes and the director’s cut was 2 hours and 5 minutes.
  • 2:20 – He prefers deleted scene sections on Blu-rays as opposed to putting all of the scenes back in.  Roskam then describes some of the deleted scenes.
  • 5:05 – Discusses how he assembled the cast and goes in-depth into the process.  James Gandolfini was his first choice for that character and Tom Hardy was the first person he cast after looking at the producers’ actor list.
  • 8:42 – Talks about how he doesn’t like having backup options when it comes to casting.  He skyped Tom Hardy on the set of Mad Max.
  • 9:45 – Talks about casting Noomi Rapace. Tom wanted to work with Noomi and she had read the script unbeknownst to Roskam. “It was decided for me.”
  • 10:43 – Discusses casting Matthias Schoenaerts, whom he knew from Bullhead.
  • 11:59 – Talks about whether he would like to do another American project or not.
  • 12:59 – He’s also developing a new feature in Belgium with Schoenaerts as well as an HBO series with Michael Mann and Mark Johnson.
  • 13:25 – His next American film might be a book adaptation but he can’t say which one.
  • 13:50 – Talks about the filmmaking process in Belgium and how it doesn’t require one to have as many eggs as possible in their basket.

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