The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou

With this spring’s big hit “The Grand Budapest Hotel," Wes Anderson displayed a new level of mastery in his filmmaking, so much so that the actual tightrope act of disparate elements rarely reared its head. That wasn’t always the case though: 2004’s “The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou” repeatedly tipped over into uncertainty and shaky ambition for the director, and now Criterion have released a funny, informal look back by Anderson and the film’s cast to explore exactly why.

Celebrating the Blu-Ray release of “The Life Aquatic” next week, Criterion have released an online-exclusive clip, “Bittersweet Remembrances” gathering Anderson, Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe, and Jeff Goldblum to discuss the various setbacks and challenges experienced during the film’s production. Taking place largely on sea, at night, and on various European coasts, as Anderson puts it, “there was no benefit to that.”

Still, the director elaborates on sticking to his vision, and also debates the correct spelling and pronunciation of “wont” with Goldblum; meanwhile Dafoe and Murray recount an especially cold night where Murray was required to stay in freezing water for an extended period of time.

It’s a humorous, fond little piece on one of Anderson’s more shaggy efforts, definitely worth checking out. Watch the clip below.