It’s been a decade since his directorial debut “CQ” but Roman Coppola will definitely make headlines later this year with his new film, “A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III” — if anything for his choice of male lead in Charlie Sheen. The middle child of Francis Ford Coppola, Roman has been immersed in the film industry since childhood (he featured as one of Tom Hagen’s kids in “The Godfather“) and, over the years, has often found time to collaborate with his father, sister and Wes Anderson. It’s curious that Coppola hasn’t been behind the camera more often, but the filmmaker has revealed that he has a few projects in mind he hopes to tackle after this sophomore effort.
“I have this idea for a kids film I’d like to do in the spirit of ‘Bugsy Malone,’ with an all kid cast,” Coppola explained. “So I have something like that that I want to do one day. I tried to do it one day but I couldn’t lift it off the ground. But that’s something I would go back to. And I have a new film Jason [Schwartzman] and I have been talking about working on together. A few things. And it’s true that you get into a groove once you do something that you feel, ‘oh wow, I’d like to do something.’ So I hope there won’t be such a long period between things.”
Neither project sounds like it’s concretely in the works, but Coppola’s enthusiasm for a return to the director’s chair is certainly a good sign. A “Bugsy Malone”-style pic from the writer-director sounds fascinating and, if word out of Cannes is anything to go by, he’s done well with Anderson’s kid-centric “Moonrise Kingdom,” which Coppola has a co-writing credit on.
A collaboration with Schwartzmann (Coppola’s cousin) is no surprise though, considering the actor has been been involved with every Coppola film (and pretty much every Anderson film). The last script they worked on together was “The Darjeeling Limited” but they will, of course, unite for ‘Charlie Swan III,’ which Coppola describes as the story of “a guy who has a very unpleasant break-up, this girl got her claws very deep in his brain, and he’s just trying to deal with this feeling of being dumped. He reaches out to the people he’s close to, his sister (Patricia Arquette), Jason, who is is his best friend and Bill Murray who plays his accountant. These guys trying to figure out what it means to go through that.”
“It’s set in California in the mid-seventies in the world of graphic design. Charlie’s character is an album cover designer. It’s kind of ironic as there are no album cover designers any more because there are no album covers. But in those times there was a lot of creative work that was happening with album covers so that’s a point of reference, that world of graphic design. The artists whose work I use in the movie, that’s kind of a subculture that I’m putting out. It’s not really a movie about cinema, like ‘CQ’ was, where there’s a lot of cinematic references but it bears some resemblance to ‘All That Jazz.’ That’s a film that I admire. It’s about a guy who is kind of outgoing, a lover of women and trying to keep it together. It’s kind of a similar tale.”
As for the tone/setting of the film, which co-star Aubrey Plaza had previously described as a “fantasy version of the ’70s,” Coppola confirms that it’ll be “more fantastical than real life. We see how he feels about his relationship through his fantasies. So it has a lot of scenes that are fantastical.” So an “All That Jazz”-style tale set in a fantastical ’70s world? Yes, please.
The film has no release date as of yet but Coppola hopes he’ll “have the opportunity to go to a festival like Venice or Toronto, [especially] to see Charlie in a tuxedo and to present the movie and the performance he gives – so much contrast to some of the imagery that people have in their minds.” [HeyUGuys]