For a man with so much to say behind the camera, Danny Boyle
is a little less tenacious in front of it, managing to survive Jonathan Ross' ITV talk show
this past weekend with a mixture of diplomacy and Olympic anecdotes. On the London 2012 opening ceremony, which (ironically) won him more popular favor than all his directorial achievements combined, he stood tactfully and perhaps tactically back from credit: “It was the ordinary people who made it, by their belief in it.” The ceremony was subject to as much political scrutiny as it was artistic, with Conservative commentators jumping on its take on British history. Ross didn’t beat about the bush, asking, “Are you a socialist?” which Boyle rebuffed, saying, “Financially, I’m very lucky… but I wouldn’t describe myself as a socialist.”
Perhaps more relevant, cinematically speaking, was the way he addressed a sore moment in his past: his fractured relationship with collaborator Ewan McGregor
, for which he now takes responsibility. “We didn’t treat him very well, I’ve got to be honest about it. We didn’t behave at our best,” admitted the director, who dropped McGregor from “The Beach
” at a late stage in favor of Leonardo DiCaprio
. The two seem to have patched it up, with a possible reconciliation for a widely-rumored sequel
,” which Boyle confirms with the tentative title “T2
,” “If James Cameron will let us use that title.” He will model the sequel on the acclaimed “7 Up
” series, showing “time pass with people you are familiar with."
His next picture, the excellent “Trance,”
a psychological thriller – and the main focus of the interview – stars James McAvoy as an auctioneer trying to remember where he hid a stolen painting with the aid of a hypnotherapist. The film has a convoluted, time-jumping narrative, and Boyle announced in a Q&A at a London screening last week (via Bleeding Cool
) that DVD buyers would be rewarded with a chronologically re-cut version, which supposedly gives insights into character motivations. Due for release in the U.S. on April 5th (and in the U.K. on Wednesday, March 29th), this might require a little more concentration than watching the Olympics...