– . – The Road Director Warns of Hollywood Apocalypse
The Road Director Warns of Hollywood Apocalypse
The Telegraph online has posted a diary by director John Hillcoat, which the Australian filmmaker wrote during the process of making his upcoming apocalyptic masterpiece The Road. Detailing the mammoth achievement of bringing Cormac McCarthy’s beloved novel to the screen, the piece is a fascinating account of just what goes into making a movie on such a massive scale.
But it’s the epilogue to Hillcoat’s diary, written in December 2009, that is perhaps the most interesting entry. Written after his forthcoming project The Promised Land, written by Nick Cave and set to star Shia Labeouf and Ryan Golsing, had been officially abandoned, it highlights Hillcoat’s – understandable – frustration with a film industry which seems determined to stagnate. Below are the director’s comments in full.
“The joke on set [of The Road] and in the edit suite was that we had to get this movie out before it became a reality. Ironically, the movie industry itself now faces its own apocalypse. The perfect storm has arrived in Hollywood: a global economic downturn combined with piracy an the increase of downloading on the internet – what happened to the record companies years ago but with much higher stakes. The reactionary first phase has kicked in – few films in development, many films put on hold or shut down.
My own new project – with a much-loved script by Nick Cave and a dream all-star cast – has fallen apart. The finance company that we began The Road with has also fallen apart, having to radically downsize to one remaining staff member. The great divide has begun, with only very low-budget films being made or huge 3D franchise films – the birth of brand films such as Barbie, Monopoly: The Movie – who knows what’s ext, Coca-Cola: The Movie?
I end the year appropriately – gazing into the apocalypse of my own industry.”
You can read the full Hillcoat diary here. You can also read in-depth interviews with Hillcoat, The Road screenwriter Joe Penhall and star Viggo Mortensen in movieScope Issue 15, out now.