Thursday, January 07, 2010

Matthew Broderick Discusses 'Wonderful World'

Stage and screen actor Matthew Broderick appeared on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien on Wednesday to plug his new film, Wonderful World, which opens across the country this Friday.

Broderick was a special guest of the Virginia Film Festival last November, when he came to Charlottesville not just to promote Wonderful World, but also to mark the tenth anniversary of his previous film, Election.

The Tony Award-winning actor took time after each screening to discuss his work. After Wonderful World, he appeared on stage in the Culbreth Theater alongside the film's director and screenwriter, Joshua Goldin, and one of the film's producers, UVA alumnus Glenn Williamson.

I caught the discussion on video and posted it to YouTube just a few days ago. I had to divide it up into digestible nuggets of less than ten minutes each.

Some readers may want to be aware of a "spoiler alert," in that Broderick, Goldin, Williamson, and questioners from the audience talk about plot elements and characters in the film.

Virginia Film Festival director Jody Kielbasa introduces the panelists in Part I:

Part II:

Part III:

Part IV:

Part V:

Part VI (Conclusion)

Deborah G. Guadan describes Wonderful World like this in the San Francisco Chronicle:
Ben (Matthew Broderick) believes the world is his enemy, and can you blame him? His folk singing career flopped, his marriage crumbled and his parenting skills kinda dried up. So it's a double blow when his roommate (and chess rival) falls into a diabetic coma. Sometimes tragedy is the only thing that can jolt you from your emotional numbness. Rated R.
Broderick had this to say about his character, named Ben Singer, in an interview earlier this week in the New York Post:

Is it more fun to play a misanthrope than someone who’s well-adjusted?
Probably. Well-adjusted people can be dull. [My character] has a lot of conflicts to fight against, I guess. I like playing happy people, too. Also, I think stories of people my age are not always happy. Characters in their late 40s tend to be going through something that isn’t always [happy]. Something with children.

How did you get your character’s disheveled look?

Oh, that was easy. I didn’t shave. And then just tried to not iron the clothes. We wanted him to look like he used a laundromat and folded his own clothes. He has very simple clothes, and we repeated them a lot to make it look like he doesn’t have many clothes.
Those expecting Ferris Bueller's Day Offwhen the go to see Wonderful World; those who appreciate a well-acted dark comedy will enjoy the film immensely.