Everyone, though, is full of praise for the director, in a manner which he would no doubt find embarrassing face to face.
“He’s got the most encyclopaedic knowledge technically of any filmmaker I’ve worked with,” says Bonham Carter. Although, regarding the amount of takes he demands, she adds, “As long as the camera’s moving don’t even start acting until take 12!”
“I remember when Fincher sent me the book,” recalls Norton. “I thought, just off having seen Se7en, ‘This is such a great guy to make this movie because he is completely comfortable posing questions and refusing to give you the answer."
"That’s the kind of courage needed to make Fight Club.’ I mean, it’s a high compliment to say, I think he just doesn’t give a fuck, you know? He really doesn’t.
He’s human, and more than he lets on he’s as susceptible as any of us to that sort of reflexive disappointment when a movie doesn’t catch a wave, but he never baulked at all. His leadership gave everybody the courage to say, ‘We’re going to go all the way.’”
David Fincher, what's your power animal? “A scorpion.”
Historical figure? “I don’t know… Irving Thalberg.” He chuckles,
“If I had a dime for every person that was offended by that movie, I’d buy the negative from Rupert Murdoch. I was born to make this movie.”
“It’s an amazing movie,” says Pitt. “It’s provocative, but thank God it’s provocative. People are hungry for films like this, films that make them think.”
Bonham Carter says, “Fincher’s got a big streak of a girlie. He’s a huge softie. He’s deliciously soft and vulnerable and a really nice person. He bullies everyone but he’s not a proper bully, it’s ‘Come on, cry babies! And again and again and again!’”
“Fincher can be a pretty hard-ass in his talk and sarcastic,” says Norton.
“But I think it’s not insignificant that he decided to put the ending in a different place than the book.
You know, even though The Narrator’s shot through the cheek and the world is falling down, when he turns to her and says, “I’m okay,” I actually believe him.
"Like it doesn’t matter, you still have to ultimately link up with other people and care about other people if not all the bullshit around you. I thought it was kind of hopeful.”
“It’s less of a love story than it is an apology,” says Fincher. “It’s an apology for bad behaviour.”
Autumn 1999. Venice, Italy. The premiere audience hates the picture. It doesn’t matter. The credits roll, the house lights flicker on.
Pitt turns to Norton and smiles, “That’s the best movie I’m ever going to be in.” The crowds are dispersing. Some people storm out shouting, “Fascists, fascists!” Norton nods, “Me, too.”
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