One of the many films to world premiere at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival was director Max Winkler’s (Ceremony, Flower) Jungleland. The film stars Jack O’Connell as a reluctant bare-knuckle boxer, with Charlie Hunnam playing his older brother and manager. After the two of them rack up a debt they can’t repay, they’re forced to take on another bout across the country and also transport a young woman named Sky (Jessica Barden) to a location near the fight. As Barden and O’Connell characters forge a relationship on the road trip, the brothers’ bond to fall apart.
Even though I didn’t get to talk to Winkler while attending TIFF, he was gracious enough to come by the Collider office. During the wide-ranging conversation he talked about the genesis of the film, his obsession with Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, how he got Charlie Hunnam and Jack O’Connell for the leads, what it was like filming in Massachusetts, the difficulty of making movies on a tight budget, the emotional toll that Hunnam’s performance had on the actor, and more. In addition, he talked about his obsession with West Side Story, Stanley Kubrick’s Napoleon, and if it’s weird for him to watch Barry since Henry Winkler is his father.
Check out what he had to say in the player above and below is exactly what we talked about.
- The Jungleland poster, which is not THE poster for Jungleland.
- What’s the film about.
- The genesis of the film.
- How did he get Charlie Hunnam and Jack O’Connell for the leads?
- His obsession with Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.
- Is there another movie that made him feel the way King Arthur did?
- Winkler talks about Charlie Hunnam’s massive celebrity during filming in Massachusetts, and what shooting in the state was like.
- What excited him and what made him nervous once it came time to edit?
- Winkler talks about the emotional toll that Hunnam’s performance had on the actor.
- Winkler discusses the difficulty of making movies on a budget.
- He shares how Scott Free’s involvement helping to get it made (and being in the presence of Ridley Scott)
Since he’s obsessed with West Side Story, is he looking forward to Spielberg’s version?
- What’s the last scene he took out of Jungleland and why?
- Winkler talks about how the “American Dream” impacts each character in the film.
- Winkler explains how Hunnam’s character knows he’s got more of a B story in life rather than an A story.
- Who ruined the most takes and why?
- What TV show would he like to guest write and direct?
- Will Kubrick’s Napoleon ever get made?
- What movie has he seen the most?
- Is it weird for him to watch Barry? (since Henry Winkler is his father)
- Will there be news about Jungleland soon?
- What will he do next?