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10/3 - A fast chat with Guy Ritchie

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for publication in Sunday's paper:

http://www.newsday.com/entertainment/movie...story?track=rss

A fast chat with Guy Ritchie

John Anderson

October 5, 2008

Probably better known as Madonna's husband than as a director of high-style, high-attitude, comic-book-type thrillers ("Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels"), Guy Ritchie recently took the Toronto Film Festival by storm: "Rocknrolla," his latest Brit gangster saga starring Gerard Butler, Thandie Newton and Tom Wilkinson, seemed to be everything the crowd wanted, and more. After an evening of bellowing, "Yes! I love Madonna," at paparazzi curious about his reportedly troubled marriage, Ritchie took a few minutes to sit with Newsday contributor John Anderson in Toronto and actually talk about his film, which opens Wednesday.

Could you have gotten a better reception than you did last night?

The crowd in London was great, but when we came here it was a different class. I felt they wanted to enjoy it from the start, a very warm environment. Just felt right, didn't it? Can't play any better than that.

Can you credit some of the reaction to the Gerard Butler cult? I even saw middle-aged women going positively bonkers.

Possibly. I didn't really know there was a whole Gerry Butler cult. Why is that? Because he's like a guy's guy? Or a woman's guy? I don't know. I am aware that he had a rather impressive set of abs in "300."

Did you have him in mind, or anyone of your cast when you were prepping the film?

Yes and no. Some of the people I had talked about. It's an organic process: You see the TV series, the movies, you make a subconscious mental note of actors you find inspiring, and gradually they come to the forefront of your mind at the appropriate time. I guess that's how the casting process really works.

Tom Wilkinson, as the mob chief, seems to be channeling Bob Hoskins, but he also seems to be having fun.

He was tremendously professional, he turned up, did his thing, pushed off, I'm not sure he really knew what he was getting into. He was pushed on time, and it was hard for us to get the timing right. But he was the guy I really wanted.

It seems obvious, but how important is place to you?

Tremendously. I reckon I'll do as good a job as I can making a place interesting even if it isn't, but London is. It's sort of been the capital of the world to a degree for 600 years, and that's not really changing. Every now and then it turns its crown over to another city for a while, but generally takes it back.

It's cyclical?

It's interesting how cyclical it is. I can't think of any other city that's held the crown as long as London has in terms of global power. I know New York has stolen the title for awhile by default of being in America. They say New York is the center of the Western world and London is the center of the rest of the world.

Is technique always going to be what people talk about when they talk about you?

Probably. It's really about entertainment. "Rocknrolla" is almost a caricature, it's almost an animated world. It's really about how I see life editorialized into an entertaining selection of choice cuts. If I go to the cinema, it's exactly the sort of thing I want to see.

What's your philosophy of film violence?

It would be hard for me to completely intellectualize the choices that I make. It's just the way I'm sort of creatively bent. I mean, I'm making a reflection of a tough world, but it's not to be taken too seriously, right? I like the idea that sometimes you play it straight and then you don't.

It's fertile ground for exploring as a director.

One character gets beaten with a golf club. It might have been on-screen. You portrayed it more by suggestion.

I could have done it on-screen, but as you probably now know, I'm neither interested in watching sex or violence necessarily on screen.

The snapshot sex scene between Gerard Butler and Thandie Newton must be the briefest on film. How'd it happen?

It was a happy accident: Gerry turned up with an infected throat and everybody was moaning and groaning and I saw it as a blessing in disguise - "Let's shoot it in 15 minutes! Gerry you're over there, Thandie, you're over there" and they never had to be together at the same time. I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing, I think it's weird watching two people cohabitate at the best of times anyway.

What's next?

"Sherlock Holmes" starts in a month. I look forward to that. They've given me some real money for a change. Big traditional movie, Robert Downey Jr.'s in it. It'll be fun. Perfect sort of thing for me: English and big.

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LOL! Are we a Gerry cult?????

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;)

yeah, pass the Gerry Juice, please :rotflmao:

Just a (IMHO) poor choice of word, but we'll substitute the adjectives 'enthusiastic fans'!!! :pointy:

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Ok, does anyone else find it the least bit IRONIC that Guy Richie, who says, "I could have done it on-screen, but as you probably now know, I'm neither interested in watching sex or violence necessarily on screen", is married to MADONNA?!?!?!

Edited by BurdenedSoul

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Ok, does anyone else find it the least bit IRONIC that Guy Richie, who says, "I could have done it on-screen, but as you probably now know, I'm neither interested in watching sex or violence necessarily on screen", is married to MADONNA?!?!?!

I thought that myself. *Scratches head*

Sally

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Guy doesn't even know how many fans (cults?) Gerard has. If its money he wants to make he better besure the film come to all the States and Cities in America.

We love our Gerry!

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Ok, does anyone else find it the least bit IRONIC that Guy Richie, who says, "I could have done it on-screen, but as you probably now know, I'm neither interested in watching sex or violence necessarily on screen", is married to MADONNA?!?!?!

Ironic - yes. But it makes sense actually because he probably can't take any more. Over-saturation. :funnyface:

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Aha! Now we are members of a new fan club...Gerard Butler's Cult! I can't believe Guy didn't know about the huge following Gerry has.

:yay::wuv:

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Guy doesn't even know how many fans (cults?) Gerard has. If its money he wants to make he better besure the film come to all the States and Cities in America.

We love our Gerry!

I'm sure if it was up to Guy the film would be opening on 3,500 screens. Unfortunately the director has no control over the distribution, that's entirely up to Warner Brothers (and THEY do know about the Gerry "cult").

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I’ve never considered myself a member of a cult. LOL. I may be a little obsessed over Gerry; I don’t know. I have almost 200 pictures of him all over my walls, I have him as my desktop picture, I have a POTO screensaver, and I write poems inspirited by him. Nope, I’m not in any way obsessed over him. LOL. Now this business about me being a member of a cult; I’ve never heard it described that way before.

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for publication in Sunday's paper:

http://www.newsday.com/entertainment/movie...story?track=rss

A fast chat with Guy Ritchie

John Anderson

October 5, 2008

Probably better known as Madonna's husband than as a director of high-style, high-attitude, comic-book-type thrillers ("Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels"), Guy Ritchie recently took the Toronto Film Festival by storm: "Rocknrolla," his latest Brit gangster saga starring Gerard Butler, Thandie Newton and Tom Wilkinson, seemed to be everything the crowd wanted, and more. After an evening of bellowing, "Yes! I love Madonna," at paparazzi curious about his reportedly troubled marriage, Ritchie took a few minutes to sit with Newsday contributor John Anderson in Toronto and actually talk about his film, which opens Wednesday.

Could you have gotten a better reception than you did last night?

The crowd in London was great, but when we came here it was a different class. I felt they wanted to enjoy it from the start, a very warm environment. Just felt right, didn't it? Can't play any better than that.

Can you credit some of the reaction to the Gerard Butler cult? I even saw middle-aged women going positively bonkers.

Possibly. I didn't really know there was a whole Gerry Butler cult. Why is that? Because he's like a guy's guy? Or a woman's guy? I don't know. I am aware that he had a rather impressive set of abs in "300."

Did you have him in mind, or anyone of your cast when you were prepping the film?

Yes and no. Some of the people I had talked about. It's an organic process: You see the TV series, the movies, you make a subconscious mental note of actors you find inspiring, and gradually they come to the forefront of your mind at the appropriate time. I guess that's how the casting process really works.

Tom Wilkinson, as the mob chief, seems to be channeling Bob Hoskins, but he also seems to be having fun.

He was tremendously professional, he turned up, did his thing, pushed off, I'm not sure he really knew what he was getting into. He was pushed on time, and it was hard for us to get the timing right. But he was the guy I really wanted.

It seems obvious, but how important is place to you?

Tremendously. I reckon I'll do as good a job as I can making a place interesting even if it isn't, but London is. It's sort of been the capital of the world to a degree for 600 years, and that's not really changing. Every now and then it turns its crown over to another city for a while, but generally takes it back.

It's cyclical?

It's interesting how cyclical it is. I can't think of any other city that's held the crown as long as London has in terms of global power. I know New York has stolen the title for awhile by default of being in America. They say New York is the center of the Western world and London is the center of the rest of the world.

Is technique always going to be what people talk about when they talk about you?

Probably. It's really about entertainment. "Rocknrolla" is almost a caricature, it's almost an animated world. It's really about how I see life editorialized into an entertaining selection of choice cuts. If I go to the cinema, it's exactly the sort of thing I want to see.

What's your philosophy of film violence?

It would be hard for me to completely intellectualize the choices that I make. It's just the way I'm sort of creatively bent. I mean, I'm making a reflection of a tough world, but it's not to be taken too seriously, right? I like the idea that sometimes you play it straight and then you don't.

It's fertile ground for exploring as a director.

One character gets beaten with a golf club. It might have been on-screen. You portrayed it more by suggestion.

I could have done it on-screen, but as you probably now know, I'm neither interested in watching sex or violence necessarily on screen.

The snapshot sex scene between Gerard Butler and Thandie Newton must be the briefest on film. How'd it happen?

It was a happy accident: Gerry turned up with an infected throat and everybody was moaning and groaning and I saw it as a blessing in disguise - "Let's shoot it in 15 minutes! Gerry you're over there, Thandie, you're over there" and they never had to be together at the same time. I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing, I think it's weird watching two people cohabitate at the best of times anyway.

What's next?

"Sherlock Holmes" starts in a month. I look forward to that. They've given me some real money for a change. Big traditional movie, Robert Downey Jr.'s in it. It'll be fun. Perfect sort of thing for me: English and big.

I really didn't know anything about Guy Ritchie except for the fate that Madonna had married him and he was a Brit. Then I hear the news that Gerry is taking part in a movie directed by Guy Richie and I thought, "This is going to be interesting."

If I pegged the man for being interesting it's because I couldn't see Madonna with just a regular. What I mean is something about him had to catch her eye and make her interested and I didn't think it would be based on just looks because she is such a creative person. So that alone interested me to see the movie and his performance as a director.

Did you have him in mind, or anyone of your cast when you were prepping the film?

Yes and no. Some of the people I had talked about. It's an organic process: You see the TV series, the movies, you make a subconscious mental note of actors you find inspiring, and gradually they come to the forefront of your mind at the appropriate time. I guess that's how the casting process really works.

Funny, that's how I always thought it was done! I mean when creating a charactor on some level you're looking for something exact and even watching a movie you might think, "I think so and so would have done a great job in that part."

Thank you for posting the interveiw with Guy Richie. His comments were a definate insight on the man. And I for one am looking forward to Sherlock Holmes.

:)

Edited by Avivid Mind

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Interesting annalogy, cult. I think that is a little strange name, but hey, if that is what the guy wants to call us, no problem. I'm now the proud member of the Gerry Butler cult. That is silly, but, whatever.

I'm not sure what to make of Guy's interview. He sounded almost jealous of Gerry's "cult." SAY,

Gerry has earned his fans with his talent, sweet spirit, and kindness. Guy seems very "upity" when around fans. Gerry just wades right in there and lets them know he loves and apprecieates them.

Guy could never have the fan base Gerry has. He doesn't have the personality and charisma Gerry has. Love Gerry absolutely!!!!!!

:whome2:

Yes, sweet Darlin',

Only You!!

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Ok, does anyone else find it the least bit IRONIC that Guy Richie, who says, "I could have done it on-screen, but as you probably now know, I'm neither interested in watching sex or violence necessarily on screen", is married to MADONNA?!?!?!

I thought that myself. *Scratches head*

Sally

I thought that same thing when I saw him at Comic-Con. He looked as though he would have been at home in a major league baseball uniform. He was very handsome and seemed surprisingly normal. Madonna has gotten so odd over the past few years that they seem like a strange couple. Whatever works!

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