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« Tribeca 2018: The Night Eats the World | Main | Tribeca 2018: The Dark »

Jason Reitman & Diablo Cody, Round Three!

by Murtada

By now you’ve all heard about the post-screening Tribeca Film Festival panel that went around the world. The moderator at a Scarface 35th anniversary screening, asked Michelle Pfeiffer about her weight during filming.

As the father of a daughter, I'm concerned about body image. The preparation for this film — what did you weigh? 

The horror! The audience met the question with groans, and Pfeiffer handled it superbly, focusing on her work for the film.

I was at another Tribeca event happening at the same time. One that was markedly devoid of sexist questions and uncomfortable moments. In fact it was the opposite of that...

A warm, funny conversation with an easy friendly rapport between the participants. Following a screening of the Charlize Theron starrer Tully, filmmaker Tamara Jenkins (The Savages) interviewed director Jason Reitman about his third collaboration with screenwriter Diablo Cody. Juno (2007) and Young Adult (2011) are their previous films together...

Reitman said that the three movies are autobiographical, not just pulling from Cody’s life but from his as well, since they're about the same age. He also talked about what links them:

Juno is about growing up too fast, and Young Adult is about growing up too slow. And this one is about that moment where you become a parent and you are forced to grow up, you are forced to stop occupying a space that your child must now occupy.

Reitman heaped praise on Theron. She plays a mother dealing with postpartum depression following the birth of her third child. She makes a connection with a young night nanny (Mackenzie Davis) who is hired to help her. Reitman says there are two types of actors: those that aware of everything on set while acting as if they have a third eye, and those who lose themselves completely to the moment and character. Mackenzie Davis is the latter kind, sometimes losing herself so much that she accidentally blocked the camera. The best, according to Reitman, are the actors who defy the odds and combine both modes, which is who Theron is. Tamara Jenkins agreed and compared Theron to Philip Seymour Hoffman in The Savages and Paul Giamatti in the upcoming Private Life, all of them able to do both simultaneously. 

The juiciest anecdote though was from Jenkins who revealed that Diably Cody had initially asked her to direct Young Adult. Jenkins turned it down, encouraging Cody to direct it herself (which Cody obviously didn't take her up on). However it was Jenkins who suggested the film’s title. Originally it was called “Mavis” according to Reitman, though Jenkins insisted it was called  “Buddy”, after the characters played by Theron and Patrick Wilson respectively. No matter, Jenkins' suggestion obviously was the right title for that story.

The Tribeca Film Festival continues in New York City through April 28th. Tully opens in theaters on May 4th.

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Reader Comments (13)

Is this a real Oscar play for Theron who just gets more and more interesting with each film,Goddess!

April 21, 2018 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

The audience overreacted.

I'm not particularly happy with Scarface being Pfeiffer's signature role for the masses.

April 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

"I'm not particularly happy with Scarface being Pfeiffer's signature role for the masses."

Wouldn't that be Catwoman?

April 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterArkaan

The audience definitely overreacted.

April 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterBillyBob

There is a way to ask that question without sounding like a total dumbass. "You play a coke addict who throughout the film falls deeper and deeper into addiction, and you see that reflected physically in your performance. How was it like to prepare for that?" Instead of "HOW MUCH DID YOU WEIGH?" Seriously? ....

April 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterAaron

Amen, Aaron. The reporter wasn't asking Pfeiffer about the toll the film may have taken on her, physically and emotionally (the shoot went way longer than anticipated. He legit asked her for a specific number, prefacing that it was okay to ask because he was the father of a daughter. Fuck thst dude.

I'm.always worried that my YOUNG ADULT love is biased because I am from Minneapolis. It's such a sardonic, weird, yet somehow heartwarming film.

April 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJakey

Mich didn't seem too upset about it.

April 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

markgordonuk: Even if she was upset about it, its her JOB not to project that. Idiot.

April 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

I was merely stating the internet getting worked up over this,it's not a JOB exactly another Actress may have handled it differently,I am sure Charlize would have given a death stare,Angelina would have waved it away with a bony hand,Emma Stone might have made a quip.


April 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

Christian Bale was treated as a great actor for his weight loss while Michelle Pfeiffer was questioned by a concerned father of daughters. If you don't see the difference, it's because you choose not to.

April 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterandrew

I think the moderator purposefully phrased it that way...he knew it would ruffles feathers and he was right.

April 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterSoSue

And Andrew, if you choose to focus on this other than real feminist issues in the world, it's because you choose to.

April 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterevangelina

The audience didn't overreact. The interviewer is a dummy thinking anyone gives a flying fuck about his daughter.

April 25, 2018 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

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