Tom Ford on Keeping an Open Mind and Crafting Award Contender 'Nocturnal Animals'
Tom Ford's Nocturnal Animals is a dark and mysterious film, that opens strangely and ends almost as strangely too. It's been compared to some of Alfred Hitchcock's work, which is some kind of compliment, and while discussing the film, he said that he had to keep an "open mind" and be willing to adapt with the film.
"You have to keep an open mind. You can write something, visualize it, map it out and go over the shot list with the DP. When you get there, you have to be willing to say, “OK, that’s not as interesting as I thought, but wow, this performance is great. Let’s shoot it.” An open mind keeps it fresh and helps it stay alive.
He described being impressed with his entire cast, and described how much and how little time he actually spend with his actors considering the format of the film. "Laura’s scene took three hours. Everybody was like that; you don’t get a lot of rehearsals with big actors. Amy Adams, I had almost no time with. Michael Shannon too. Actors just aren’t available for two weeks to come in for rehearsals. It just doesn’t happen anymore.
"I knew I wanted Amy and she was the first person I attached and then after Cannes, I went after Jake." On the bizarre opening sequence in which the overweight and elderly women are displayed as art, Ford calls it a "Microcosm for one of the themes of the film."
It’s a microcosm for one of the themes of the film. These are women who have let go of everything that our culture says that they should be, and they were so joyful. I loved these women. They were so comfortable with themselves, with their bodies, absolutely uninhibited. I had so much fun the day that we shot and I had so much fun editing these women. I found them so incredibly beautiful and then we cut to Amy who’s sitting there absolutely exactly like our culture tells us a beautiful woman should be. Successful, and dead inside
"That’s one of the themes of the film."