Monday, September 29, 2014

A View from Vic Armstrong's Window - LEFT BEHIND

“Left Behind” is directed by Academy and BAFTA Award-winning filmmaker Vic Armstrong, who is known for directing “Young Indiana Jones” for George Lucas, starring Sir Christopher Lee, Joss Ackland and Jennifer Ehrle and “Joshua Tree” starring George Segal, Michelle Phillips and Dolph Lundgren. Armstrong is also renowned for his staging & directing action sequences in such films as “The Mission,” multiple James Bond films, “The Amazing Spider-Man,” “Green Hornet,” “Thor,” and recently “Jack Ryan” to name a few.

Here's what Vic Armstrong had to say about Left Behind on a conference call last week!

Now I was absolutely thrilled when, when I read this script. I read three or four scripts a week when I’m not working and I guess as you know my background is pretty heavily action-orientated. And I have to tell stories with, with visual action. And to read this script and see how character-driven it was and what a fabulous story-line it had was a thrill to me. 

And when I did first meet Paul LaLonde he came around the house and the first thing I said to him was, well I’ll tell you what, I love the script so much I can’t see a word in it I’d like to change. And normally on a script, you take them, you’d break them down, you’d take this out, you’d throw this away and put this in to it. But this had every, everything you see on the screen was written in that original script. And I was blown away by this fact. 

You know, funny-enough during the process, we thought well maybe we won’t have enough time to shoot it all in what could we lose if we lose anything and we’d take some little object out, some little part out, immediately putting it back in because it just upset the flow of the whole movie. So, I was thrilled to have such a great script to start with and to be able to show my, my talents if you’d like as a director with having a story-telling.

 And then the next step was of course getting the great cast together and a crew. And we did, as Paul said we’ve got an A-list cast. Every single one of them did a sterling performance and I’m so excited for all of them and every time I look at it I’m so ecstatic about they translated their parts into the story telling. And it’s not only the cast, you need a good crew to make a movie and I got Jack Green, one of the greatest cinematographers there’s been in the last few years, he’s done all the Clint Eastwood stuff, he was nominated for “Unforgiven,” and we talked about it and I, I, I only see things big in film worlds, in film visions and I wanted to shoot this wide-screen and Jack was my man and he was on-board with that. 

And we covered everything so easily, it just seemed no problem, wherever we put the camera down was a wonderful frame and we didn’t go in for all the crazy tight close-ups and things. We shot it to give the characters breathing-space and we shot it with enough time for them to establish their characters and tell their stories. We had a wonderful production designer, in Stephen Altman, Robert Altman’s son who did fabulous work on it, so for me it was a labor of love. It’s been absolutely phenomenal. And even when we got to the location, everywhere we turned. The house we found, for, for "Chloe’s" house, “Rayford Steele’s” house, was absolutely brilliant how it didn’t need changing inside, and everything, it was serendipity, everything just fell into place. So I feel blessed, and all the stars aligned, figuratively-speaking and reality-speaking. (laughing) And I could not be happier with it, I must say. 

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