“You labor for three days to write a scene, and then you cut it in the edit.” That’s the paradox of being a writer/director, says Massy Tadjedin, who wrote and directed the romantic drama Last Night, starring Keira Knightley, Sam Worthington and Eva Mendes. The film is about a married couple who spends the night away from each other after an emotional fight.
“Everything you do is service of the film,” she says, recounting a two-day trip she took to Paris to persuade Knightley out of hiatus to take on the project. Despite the jetlag, the flu and not being able to speak French (listen to the podcast to hear the whole story), Tadjedin signed on her dream actress and the battle began to get her film made.
Script sat down with Tadjedin to hear about the emotional journey from page to screen on her debut directing project.
* Structuring the script: “I didn’t write it chronologically.”
* Saying no to a financier when he didn’t see her artistic vision.
* Balancing parallel storylines, on the page and in the edit.
* Being on set with a tight schedule, in tight places.
Click to listen to the full interview: