USA Today has a brief, lighthearted interview with Joel and Ethan Coen from the Toronto Film Festival about Burn After Reading. Also there’s a great photo gallery with some new ones to peruse. You can read the interview below (it really is quite short) or follow the link to USA Today’s site. Really, it’s up to you, freedom of choice and all that…
Q. Do you each get your own Oscar for every win?
Ethan: Yes. They look good all together. It’s more impressive.
Q. Where do you keep them?
Joel: They’re at the office. They’re just all piled up.
Q. Did you at least get a lot of free dinners at the pre-Oscars awards ceremonies?
Ethan: Yeah, dinner and drinks.
Joel: If you can call that a dinner. The food isn’t great at those things, let’s face it. It’s better to eat ahead of time.
Q. Where did this plot come from?
Joel: We started with the cast, thinking about parts. We thought about what would be fun to see from these various actors, some of whom we worked with before, some of whom we hadn’t. What would be fun to see them play? We just thought, for want of a better description, a spy story. It’s not really a spy story. It became something else.
Q. You tailored the roles to the actors. As a result, the ex-CIA analyst is the most John Malkovich-y part ever.
Ethan: John angry is good. John was a man on fire.
Q. Do either one of you have a gym membership?
Joel (emphatically): Yeah. You live in New York City and, you know, when there is snow on the ground and you can’t go to the park, you better have a gym membership. Unless you have a really big apartment.
Q. Do you work out regularly?
Ethan: No, I don’t really like it (guffaws loudly).
Joel: I said I had a gym membership. I didn’t say I worked out.
Q. Burn After Reading has been described as silly. But there is a serious futility in each character’s obsession.
Ethan: It’s pretty bleak. I watched a football game last night, and it was the first time I’d seen a commercial for it, since I don’t watch much TV. I thought, “Hmm, it looks like a comedy.”
Q. Have either one of you engaged in Internet dating?
Joel: (Expletive)! Well, we’re married.
Q: Were you wed before there was the Internet?
Joel: Yes, I was. Well, practically.
Ethan: We’ve been married since before electricity.
Q: I like the clip from the fake romantic comedy you invented, Coming Up Daisy.
Ethan: Try to see the film again because the print on the poster is actually so funny. On the poster, we filled in all the credits.
Q: Who directed it.?
Joel: Sam Raimi (of Spider-Man fame and an old cohort).
Ethan: And it’s based on a novel by Cormac McCarthy. (author of No Country for Old Men).
Q: Now Dermott Mulroney, the star of Coming Up Daisy, can say he has been in a Coen brothers film. Sort of.
Joel: Dermott, we’ve known forever. It was great of him to come by and do that little cameo.
Q: You wrote Linda the plastic surgery nut for your wife, Frances McDormand. Is that really her naked butt in the opening scene?
Joel: Sure. She does her own stunts, so she says.
Q: Who is the better idiot — Pitt or Clooney?
Joel: They are running neck and neck now. It’s going to be a photo finish.
Thanks to Bunnie for sending it in.