Love and war over the power of literature versus painting take center stage in Fred Schepisi’s witty romantic drama, Words and Pictures, opening in theaters May 23rd. Battle lines are drawn when a prep school English teacher and one-time literary star Jack Marcus (Clive Owen) challenges a new teacher and once celebrated abstract painter Dina Delsanto (Juliette Binoche) to disprove his conviction that the art of the written word trumps the visual arts in its ability to convey meaning, ideas, and emotion. The declaration of war galvanizes their students, but as Marcus and Delsanto square off, they suddenly realize they may have met their match.
In an exclusive interview, Schepisi talked about the appeal of Gerald DiPego’s complex screenplay, the ways it touches on the impact of today’s technology and our obsession with social media, how he landed Owen and Binoche in the lead roles, the emotional depth they brought to the story, his thoughts on the importance of words versus pictures as a filmmaker who works in a medium that relies on the power of both, and his upcoming projects including The Olive Sisters starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Anthony LaPaglia, Josh Lucas and Melissa George, Drowsy Chaperone, Burnt Piano and Last Man. Hit the jump to read the interview.