‘I DON'T SEE MY JOB AS BEING FINISHED UNTIL THE FINAL CUT'
lwro e on Ouixo
Screenwriter Tony Grisoni has been a busy man of late. Here he shares some half-truths with Miles Fielder.
‘ he danger is you mythologisef says British I screenwriter Tony (irisoni (pictured. inset). with reference to promoting his film [trot/leis ol'l/ie /l('(l(/ tpictut'cdl. Prior to its premiere at last August‘s Iidinburgh International I5i|m I‘estival (irisoni tells me. ‘I)uring the tnaking ol a lilm you‘re talking about what you're doing. By the time the lilm wraps there are lies you‘ve all agreed to tell. I mean.‘ he coughs. ‘w eII established l‘aclsf It's a hit unnerving. btit wholly appropriate. that (irisoni admits to lying. His mock-rock-documentary
includes a pack ol~ them. It presents the ‘true' story of
the pioneers of punk. when in tact it‘s an utterly ridiculous though thoroughly convincing (iothic talc ol‘ conjoined twins who become pop stars. Il‘ anything (irisoni says about the lilm can be believed. it started life as a novel published in l‘)77 by the science l‘iction writer Brian .-\Idis.s. (il'isoni read it around 1986 and subsequently had a meeting with .-\Idiss who liked the screenwriters treatment and said to his manager. "We should give Tony the option l‘or a year. l‘or l'ree.‘ (irisoni then spent the nest 2t) trying and failing to raise landing for this wildly non- commercial project. until finally he met documentarians Keith I‘ulton and Louis Pepe in Spain. w here Terry (iilliam was trying and failing to lilm 'l'lie .Iluu Who Killed Don Quixote (the Iatter‘s no lie. see Iiulton and Pepe’s not—mock-doc. Lost in La .IIune/iul. 'They wanted to make their own lilm . . .' starts (irisoni. The rest. as they say”. is history tor mythology i.
(irisoni's personal mythology is he was born in post-war London and grew up in .\'orl‘olk (where the Brothers ol'rlie Heut/ supposedly come from). He worked in various jobs in the lilm indtistry — BBC runner. (‘hannel 4 documentary producer. production manager on music videos and films — before he started writing scripts in the I98tls. The first to he lilmed was I‘lxll‘s Queen ol‘HeurIs. a comedy about
Italian immigrants in London. but his screenwriting career didn‘t take of for another ten years. when 'I‘erry (iilliam directed (irisoni's adaptation of Hunter S 'I‘hompson's I'eur um/ Lou/hing in [us I'egus. That marked the beginning of a beautil‘ul relationship. Since then. (irisoni‘s developed a collaborative way ol' working with directors. which resulted in a lield trip to Pakistan with Michael Winterbottom I‘m the acclaimed human tral‘licking drama In This IIiil'lrl. ‘The script is my jole (irisoni says. ‘but I'm interested in the ﬁnished ﬁlm. The script will be written and re-written throughout the process. particularly in editing. Therefore. I don‘t see my job as being linished until the linal cut. Some lilms lend themselves to more involvement than others. On
Brothers ol the Head I was there for every day of
shooting.' (iiven (irisoni‘s worked on all of (iilliam’s l'ilms
since I'eur uiu/ Loot/ting (.Ilinotuur. written but never
l'ilmed. (iood ()meus'. never l'ilmed. Don Quixote. ditto. The Brothers (irinun. Yule/until. Surely 0&0 are on the same collaborative wavelength'.’ ‘You have to be on some kind of similar wavelength to work together.‘ says (irisoni. ‘but also we're not. With 'I'u/elum/ the screenplay was bleaker than the ﬁnished film. and the book. Terry brought a lushness and colour and romance and gentleness to the lilm that wasn‘t there in the screenplay.~
(irisoni‘s currently working with Jane ('ampion on the Harry Houdini romance. Death Defying :Ieis. Is there any likelihood oI going back to Don Quixote. I ask as our interview ends. ‘The Don will be done.~ the sphinx-like (irisoni replies. ‘and I will be involved with it.‘
Premonition. or more mythologising‘.’
GFT, Glasgow; Cineworld Renfrew Street, Glasgow & Cineworld, Edinburgh from Fri 6 Oct. See review, page 38.
THE BEST FILM 8. DVD RELEASES
* The Devil Ween Prada Slight but deliciously enjoyable adaptation of Lauren Weisberger's bestselling novel set in the merciless world of fashion magazine publishing. See review. page 38. General release from Thu 5 Oct.
3|! Brothers of the Head Inventive. weird and Oddly believable mockumentary based on Brian Aldiss’ novel about conjoined rock ‘n' roll twins Tom and Barry Howe. See interview, left. and review. page 38. GFI'. Glasgow; Cineworld Renfrew Street. Glasgow 8 Cineworld, Edinburgh.
3|! Children of Men Inventive adaptation of PD James' futuristic novel from Mexican director Alfonso Cuardn (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban). General release.
* Volver Almodovar's chick ﬂick gets a second wind. Fi/mhouse, Edinburgh.
IIK El Vamplro Rare screening of cult 1957 Mexican vampire ﬂick kicks off an excellent season of old and new Mexican movies. Fi/mhouse, Edinburgh on Sat 7 Oct only; GFII Glasgow on Sun 75 Oct only. 1‘ Document 4 The best cutting edge documentaries from around the world in one festival, you lucky people. GFf, Glasgow & CCA, Glasgow from Fri 13 Oct.
3|! Sueplrla Dario Argento’s 1977 masterpiece starts the new Psychotronic Cinema season. Filmhouse, Edinburgh on Thu 12 Oct only.
* Documentaries That Changed the World: John Pilger Great box set of crucial political documentaries from the last few decades. See review, page 41. Out now. (Network).
5-18 Oct 2006 1118 LIST 37