A retrospective in honor of Academy Award-winning actress Julianne Moore, who was the special guest for Feature VII, a fundraiser benefiting Film Streams.
In a 2014 interview with THE DISSOLVE, director Todd Haynes discusses casting Julianne Moore in SAFE: “Whether or not you write and originate your own material as a director, I think it’s always a mystical, mystified kind of process from page to screen, and how concepts on the page become embodied by real people and real actors. It’s hard to overestimate the importance of casting in films, and finding the right person for the role, but in this particular case, I don’t know if I had a bigger eureka moment than when Julianne auditioned for me for SAFE […] And I was impressed with how she could make somebody who is that much of a cipher into somebody who you believe is a real person, but not over imbuing it with too much editorializing or second guessing, or kind of winking to the audience.
“That took a kind of bravery on her part, and an intuition that I never fully appreciated until she was there in the room doing it for me. All of a sudden, it really was a flesh-and-blood person who was speaking these lines, and that felt like a revelation. She said something similar about having read the script saying she was very excited about it, and she had never read something like it. She sensed that she had an understanding of the script that was her own, and if she didn’t jibe with the director, there’s nothing she could really do. All she knew is that she had some intuition about it. And as it turned out, she couldn’t have been more on the mark.
I continue to watch that amazing ability of hers to know how to maintain restraint, and to really trust the viewer that you don’t have to do all this extra footwork to cajole the sympathies of the audience. They have tremendous powers themselves that you can respect, and you can elicit through all kinds of means. She really understands the complexity of that contract.”