This week finally sees the limited release opening of "The Place Beyond The Pines," Derek Cianfrance's follow-up to “Blue Valentine" starring Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper, Eva Mendes, Dane DeHaan and many more. A searing drama about family and legacy, the movie earned a rare A-grade review from us when it premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival. We recently got the chance to sit down with Gosling (and most of the principal cast) of 'Pines' earlier this month and during our conversation with the "Drive" actor we also asked him about his upcoming directorial debut, his collaboration with Terrence Malick and more.
But the next time we'll see Gosling on screen is in the early summer, starring in "Only God Forgives," Danish filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn's next reteam with the actor following "Drive." What can we expect from the movie about an English gangster in Thailand (Gosling) who sets out to avenge his murdered brother in a brutal story of rage, betrayal and the possibility of redemption? “It's very extreme,” the actor said. “It's part of the same dream as ‘Drive,’ but it's more of a nightmare than a dream but it's more extreme.”
Part of the film’s severity comes from the fact that Refn and Gosling were given carte blanche with no studio heads looking over their shoulders. “We shot it in Thailand and no one was watching,” he said. “So that's what happens when you let Nicolas loose in Thailand. There's no one around to put the reins on and he's completely unleashed.”
Gosling also had the chance to work with Rooney Mara, Michael Fassbender and more last summer in Terrence Malick's untitled drama centering around intersecting love triangles within the rock scene in Austin, Texas. The actor said Malick changed his approach this time and also suggested the filmmaker was working on more films than we know about. Malick used to write expansive, beautiful screenplays which he would then essentially discard when he got to set. This time, he didn’t even bother. “No there was no script,” the actor said when quizzed about it. “I think he used to have to write them and now I think they're onto the fact that he doesn't use them anyway so they're not requiring them.”
We asked which Malick film he was going to appear in – two pictures were shot last summer – and we had to double check because you can never be too sure who’s making a cameo where. “I'm in the music one. Fassbender, Rooney Mara, Cate Blanchett, Natalie Portman, Val Kilmer, Patti Smith, Robert Plant, Johnny Rotten, the Black Lips, just I mean every day was unlike anything,” Gosling said.
So just two Malick films on the horizon? Guess again. Gosling suggests there’s more, hinting at the documentary “Voyage of Time” and possibly other projects we don’t know about . “He's doing more than two,” Gosling added. “He's cutting like five movies right now, one of which is about the creation of the universe that he's been working on for the last fifteen years but I'm not in that one I don't think.”
Somewhat cagey though, Gosling was even more reticent about his feature-length debut, "How To Catch A Monster" which will star Christina Hendricks. While a log-line is out, Gosling wouldn’t even commit to it, suggesting the film could change. “If I've learned anything from the great directors I've worked with it's that you are always making the film,” he said. “It's always evolving and it's not finished until you lock picture so I'm not sure what it will be.”
"The Place Beyond The Pines" opens in limited release this Friday March 28 and goes wide on April 12th. More from these interviews soon.