End of the Road
Walter Salles talks about end of filming of “On The Road” project which will display the book by Jack Kerouac

“I just think this movie will be when the last plane is shot,” said the filmmaker Walter Salles in mid-2010. Done. The final slate of On the Road was hit on December 11 last, San Francisco (USA), after almost four months on the road with the actor Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley, Tom Sturridge, Kristen Stewart, Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst, Amy Adams, Steve Buscemi and Alice Braga, and others. The care Brazilian is understandable, since even today many difficulties prevented the adaptation of this classic of the Beat movement, Jack Kerouac, published in 1957. The economic crisis of 2008 was the latest drying up funding sources and those interested in venturing into an independent film. On Thursday, the director started editing the film. In an interview, said preparations for the film, tells how they were filming in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Argentina and says the film should be ready by early 2012.

Leaf – After so many names involved in the attempt to film “On the Road” feels like having finally secured the implementation of this project?

Walter Salles Jr. – Without the support and generosity of filmmakers and writers connected to the other incarnations of the project, such as Francis Ford Coppola, Roman Coppola and Barry Gifford, would not have reached the end … This is the only certainty is that. From a personal standpoint, finished shooting a project that took six years to materialize is not simple. It is a feeling of emptiness.

The fact that he had been shot in 2010 somehow changed their options, since the movie deals with themes like the role of immigrants, the culture of fear, sexual repression, liberation by drugs?

The invitation from Zoetrope to make the film came in 2004. During those years that was not possible to finance the film, much has changed in the U.S. and worldwide. But Kerouac’s book transcends a particular period and their possible inconsistencies. He announces a behavioral revolution that has opened up many of the changes usually associated with libertarian 60 years and that affect how we live today, the sexual liberation, mind expansion through drugs, redefining the family, the emergence of ecology etc.. And most of all, the need for experimentation.

When filming began? As last?

The MK2, the French independent producer, gave us the green light at the end of May. We only had eight weeks to prepare to start shooting, less than any movie I’ve directed. There were sixty-few days of shooting, 20 less than “Diaries [Motorcycle (2004)], for the same number of scenes. In other words, there was no time for much hesitation.

What countries and cities were the recordings?

In the U.S. cities that have kept traces of the past are increasingly rare. There are malls, Walmarts and McDonalds everywhere. This forced us to go farther and farther to find places that still had some architectural interest, and deserted roads. We shot in different regions of Canada, around Calgary, Montreal and Hull, in New Orleans (USA), in the deserts of Arizona, San Francisco and Mexico.

There was shooting in Bariloche. Why?

First, because the film’s budget did not allow us to wait for winter in the Northern Hemisphere. One solution would be to create the winter digitally manipulating the images. I come from the documentary and am totally against it, fake snow, actors having to spend the sensation of cold at 40 degrees in the shade. That was when we remember that during the filming locations of “Diaries” was a stretch of the border between Argentina and Chile we had left out because it seems to eastern U.S.. We went there in August. We shot in the middle of snowstorms, freeze the truth and still had the pleasure of finding a good part of the team “Diaries.”

What is the film’s budget? The fact that a smaller budget than anticipated changed the film in any way?

The cost of On the Road “differs from other films in that it includes the expenditures that occurred during 45 years of development … a dozen different routes, payments to producers involved in earlier stages of the film, etc.. The MK2 is still calculating the final budget, but the fact is that we shot with economy and urgency to get to the end. It was not possible, for example, mounted parallel to the shooting. It is the first time this has happened since “Foreign Land” (1996). We did not see what we shot.

There is already an estimate of when will be released?

No, because only now we begin to discover the film images, with the beginning of the assembly. I imagine he will be ready by year’s end or early 2012.

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15 Jan, 2011



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