A True Marriage of Image and Music: Benjamin Millepied in Carmen | Interviews

I really like the creative choice of seeing the band in the background of the frame for a diegetic feel. What is the decision making behind that choice?

We felt it was the right decision to have them there. We want it to be complimentary, and they always are, so the music comes from where the actors are.

Paul and Melissa have great chemistry. What is the way to unite them?

He arrived, I think, in 2018. He hung around, even though the movie was dropped, picked up, and dropped again. She is very beautiful, with an amazing voice. And we just did the picture a little bit, and then we worked on the set. He arrived earlier, and Paul actually arrived at the last minute.

I love the presence of Rossy de Palma here. He shows up and just adds some kind of refinement to this story. Can you talk more about working with him?

He arrived in 2018, as well. And he never shied away from the film. When he arrived at the set, he entered very sure of who he wanted to be Masilda. He brought props and lots of ideas. And I took them all. I rarely turn down anything he suggests. He is so amazing.

What props did he bring?

Well, the shawl she was dancing around at the end, there were necklaces and some jewelry, and then the eyeshadow on the lids, that was her idea. He just brought as many different jewelry as he could think of [Masilda] wear. It was very nice.

It’s funny because the eyeshadow reminds me of “The Cotton Club.”

You are right. And maybe he did, but I don’t think so. But that’s why I re-watched “The Cotton Club” afterwards. It’s really funny; I forgot that.

You, of course, filmed some scenes in Australia, but how many were filmed in established locations as opposed to sets?

I mean, obviously, all the interiors were built on location. They creatively interpreted all the red walls. It’s an amazing job, it’s amazing because that’s the point: We’re trying to create a world here. We were also in Australia in the desert. And we were supposed to shoot some scenes outside of LA, but I didn’t feel like I needed to do it again.

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