Peter Bart chats it up with Guillermo Del Toro

Posted by · 10:38 am · July 3rd, 2008

Guillermo Del Toro on the set of Pan\'s LabyrinthVariety’s Peter Bart sat down recently with “Hellboy 2” director Guillermo Del Toro, presumably for the upcoming episode of AMC’s “Shootout.”

He also has some nice pics up of the inventive filmmaker’s infamous sketchbooks, though they’re covered in watermarks.  I assume it’s all in the way of plugging Sunday’s episode (which should be a good interview…Del Toro could make even Peter Guber seem to be asking pointed questions).

Here’s a look:

Del Toro is a man who loves to let his imagination roam, but he is very much a serious student of film who can discourse on the craft of Hitchcock and who helps guide and promote the work of fellow Mexican filmmakers like Inaritu and Cuaron (with whom he has a production company called Cha Cha Cha). For him, movies are both a playpen and a serious business — and a superbly remunerative place to have a happy childhood.

I’m REALLY looking forward to “Hellboy 2: The Golden Army,” I must say. I was not much of a fan of the initial installment, though I could not, at the time, deny the sheer scope of imagination on display. The trailers and promotional materials for the sequel have indicated the next level of visual splendor, so much so that Cinematical’s James Rocchi said he felt as if his “imagination had eaten too much.”

And despite my extreme distaste with much of Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” franchise, I’m oddly anticipating Del Toro’s “The Hobbit” with a twisted sort of glee.

Finally, it’s a few days old, but Jeffrey Wells recently sat down with the filmmaker (he’s always been an admirer). Have a listen.

→ 7 Comments Tags: , , , , , , | Filed in: Daily

7 responses so far

  • 1 7-03-2008 at 11:34 am

    Dan said...

    Kris, you always mention how much you dislike The Lord of the Rings films. Why is that? I just saw Fellowship again at the AMPAS theater, and it is such a good movie.

  • 2 7-03-2008 at 12:30 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    I’d be lying if I didn’t say some small part of it didn’t have to do with the group hug the films experienced throughout the world like they were the second coming. I think the first film (Extended Edition) is probably the best film, the most complete, the most emotional (for me).

    The second and third films are wonderful achievements in action filmmaking (TTT especially) and are engaging on that level.

    But the gratuitous nature of the third (the neverending story) really dug into my side. I was never fond of Elijah Wood’s performance and his rather terrible accent, nor was I keen on Sean Astin’s heavily lauded portrayal in the third film. Though I did find him to be refreshing in Fellowship.

    I don’t think they are bad films. I will still watch them from time to time. I own the EEs. But I hold them on a much more mediocre level than most. I think they are, by and large, highly indulgent works.

    I also find it interesting that, five years removed from “the trilogy that would change the industry,” the filmmaking world seems no more different than it did prior to their release. I’m not saying that in the way of a jab at the films, more than a comment on the hysteria that enveloped the industry during those three years and has finally waned, proving that there was a lot of smoke, but very little fire.

    (I expect, now, to receive tons of emails in protest, perhaps plenty of comments here as well (the LOTR fans are a serious bunch). But I want it apparent that I mean no disrespect to Jackson’s talents or his enthusiasm and respect for the material.)

  • 3 7-03-2008 at 12:38 pm

    Mr. Gittes said...

    No, you should receive emails protesting your No Country for Old Men review…you still ain’t buyin’ what the Coen’s are selling, Kris?

  • 4 7-03-2008 at 12:53 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    I’m so pleased to have encountered someone else who doesn’t regard the LOTR trilogy with a kind of hushed awe. I was impressed by The Two Towers on an aesthetic level, but the other two films are just so turgid and self-aware. (Not to mention, quite poorly acted.)

    I learned to deal with TROTK’s sweep two years before it happened, because it was so grindingly inevitable, but it still kills me – KILLS me – that they had to give it a screenplay award too.

  • 5 7-03-2008 at 3:57 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Gittes: Nope.

  • 6 7-05-2008 at 12:50 am

    Fei said...

    I suspect that ironically, you will be on the other side of the debate when The Dark Knight is released, the overwhelming majority who will be proclaiming it to be “the second coming” and eager to give it, Nolan, Ledger, and co. a big “group hug.” Of course, unlike LOTR, The Dark Knight won’t be sweeping the Oscars… or will it?

    I’m as excited about The Dark Knight as the next guy, but I just wanted to point out the silliness of holding resentment towards any movie for which your opinion doesn’t match the orgasmic one held by the rest of the world. I’m quite sure that the epic scope on which Nolan has executed his movie (especially as attested by the running time) will be considered “highly indulgent” by detractors.

  • 7 7-05-2008 at 3:10 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    I sincerely doubt your final statement could ever be founded in the slightest. As for Rings, I don’t think it’s unfair to hold resentment toward it for the reasons stated. But those are not my only issues, and I outlined what my feelings were on a critical level, so there certainly isn’t a lack of transparency here.

    As for TDK — and despite what you might think given my own orgasm leading up to the release — if it doesn’t work, I’m quite capable of saying as much.