|Photo: Dan Cutrona/Sabrina Inc|
K-11 fan, Noemie Sornet, was very lucky enough to see K-11 at the Cannes Film Festival & interview director, Jules Stewart, exclusively for the K-11 Movie Fan Site.
2 p.m on the afternoon. I just saw the brilliant K-11 movie and I am about to interview its director, Jules Stewart. We meet each other at the Intandem suite on The Croisette. Wearing Converse and Raybans, she gave me a huge smile and began to answer my questions in a passionate way.
How did it all begin ? K-11 as it's a very specific subject, where did you get the idea ?
Well, I was actually working on a movie and a young guy, Jared Kurt, approached me. He wanted to write a story about K-11 but he didn't know how to write the scprit. I'm a script supervisor, so I read 2 scenes and I found they were great. I then decided to help him write the script. We did a lot of research and we came up with the routine of the dorms. Because K-11 is a real place. So we started with the structure, of how the dorms actually work and then we turned to character and put them in that situation. It was a great fun writing that script. The movie then got founded three different times. And three different times it fall away. Finally, two french guys in Los Angeles loved the script and gave us 3 million dollars. We started preproduction on May 18th, 2011.
It's the first time you directed a movie. Was it a goal in your career ?
No, it wasn't. My goal for my career was to be a writer. But I interviewed a lot of people to direct this movie but nobody got it, nobody understood it, so I said : ''I can do it myself''. Because if you can't understand the movie, maybe I'm just the best person to do it on my own. Which I did.
What was the most difficult part of the process for you ?
Casting for me was probably the scariest part of the process, because it's 99,9% of the movie. Kate Del Castillo who played Mousey was the first person I casted. She's from Mexico and she is just a genius. D.B Sweeney came to my office and wanted the role of Johnson. Things started to come together. And I am very happy. I was very careful to find people who are not afraid of this material. Because if you're afraid of the material, you hold back, and you won't give a great performance. And they did a great performance. I love my cast. It was great fun.
Did you let the cast improvise ?
Not so much. We didn't have time. We shot the movie in 22 days. In the morning, I would come in, and occasionally if someone said 'can I try something different', if we had time, I would absolutely allow them to do that. Couple of the scenes we did were unscripted. I like letting the actors bring to the table.
Talking about the cast, your son Cameron did his first onscreen performance. Does he have new projects going on ?
No because he is actually a grip. I wrote that character, Sledgehammer, with him in my mind and he agreed to actually do it. He is very shy and sweet and I'm really proud of him, he did a great job.
And your daughter Kristen also plays a micro-cameo in the movie...
Yes, she is the secretary on the telephone. She loves the film and wanted to be a part of it. She was going to be Butterfly at first. Kristen attached herself to that role years ago but the schedule didn't work. There was Snow White and the Huntsman and I have to push her up to do this big movie.
The character of Butterfly is indeed such a huge role. Could you say more about it?
It's sort of like the breaking of innocence. Butterfly is the youngest member of the dorm, she is only 18. She has psychological problem, and she's not been yet diagnosed. When she said ''I'm here because I took care of my daddy'', she's actually killed her father. It is very deep, intense. Portia Doubleday who plays Butterfly has the hardest role in the movie, it's intensely psychological. She shows some demons inside of her and we tried to photograph them.
As a script supervisor, what sort of subject do you like working on?
I have a couple of pieces I have done by myself and I love driven characters. I like smaller films that tell a story about people.
Any new project?
My new picture may be one that I wrote years ago. It's a story about the United States Government finding a body on Mars. The dilemma is whether to tell the people that they found this body or whether to deny it.
Let's talk about Cannes. How is the festival going for you?
We are having a wonderful time here, it couldn't be better. We already got offers for K-11, the movie has been very well received there.
How long are you staying?
Until May 26th. I'm here for the whole festival. My daughter Kristen is coming on the 22nd for her movie ON THE ROAD so I'll be here to support her. I'm really proud of her.
Red carpet time then?
I don't know yet, but I will definitely be on the background, applauding her.
Thank you to so much to @NoemieS7art for conducting this interview with Jules and sharing it with us.
Thank you to Jules for taking the time to to do this interview for us fans. We're are very appreciative and honored.