Romance and cannibalism might seem like an unlikely pairing, but that’s exactly why Bones and All screenwriter David Kajganich thought that only director Luca Guadagnino could do justice to his script, which he adapted from Camille DeAngelis’ 2015 novel.
“This really interesting and intimate story about a young woman discovering herself and unpacking conflict between who she thinks she ought to be in the world and who her body and her identity require her to be,” Kajganich said at the News Brig’s The Contenders Film: Los Angeles panel Saturday. “And then you add the relationship that’s just packed with desire with another person who really sees her for who she is.”
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He added: “It’s a complicated tone. It’s a complicated structure, and there just aren’t many directors I would trust to try to take a crack at something. So when I finished the script, I sent it to Luca and crossed my fingers.”
For his part, Guadagnino says that he fell in love with the script as soon as he read it and that he related to its sense of isolation after having lost his father in the past year and also ended a relationship.
“The characters were so touching to me,” the filmmaker said, “and I knew this was going to be a truly deep love story, the story of loneliness … that I kind of felt very strongly about myself at the time. And so it also was interesting to me to see this wonderful country that is America and the Midwest, in particular.”
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The film follows Timothée Chalamet and Taylor Russell as two drifters traveling through the Midwest who find solace in each other and seek out victims to satisfy their “unique” diet.
Although the book is set in the present day, Kajganich made the choice to set the script in the 1980s to capture a stronger sense of loneliness, he said.
The music duo of Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross also were onstage Saturday.
Check back Monday for the panel video.