Among the new films opening this week is “Fur,” director Steven Shainberg and writer Erin Cressida Wilson‘s provocative take on the life of famous photographer Diane Arbus. With the full title “Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus,” the film stars Nicole Kidman as Arbus, a woman who made her name photographing outcasts. The challenging, artistic, and curious new film reunites the key team behind 2002’s “Secretary” — Shainberg, Wilson and producer Andrew Fierberg — for a biography that evokes both “Beauty and the Beast” and “Alice in Wonderland,” as Arbus falls under the spell of a masked figure (played by Robert Downey, Jr.) who himself is afflicted with a rare medical condition.
“There are all kinds of expectations when one hears about a Diane Arbus movie,” explained Shainberg, in a coversation with indieWIRE during the Telluride Film Festival. “And one of the things the film has to deal with is that kind of expectation of a movie that deals with her whole life… I would love to see that movie, I think her entire life is phenomenal. But, to tackle that cinematically was impossible in my imagination.” Continuing, Shainberg told indieWIRE, “This is an intimate portrait of her inner life and what she might have experiences in photographing a single subject. A movie about the taking of one picture.”
In an indieWIRE: Video clip available via YouTube, Steven Shainberg talks with indieWIRE about why he decided to make the movie as an “imaginary portrait” of the legendary photographer Diane Arbus.
THE LIST FOR THIS WEEK:
“Cautiva” (November 10), directed by Gaston Biraben.
Distributor: Laemmle/Zeller Films. Official website
“Copying Beethoven” (November 10), directed by Agnieszka Holland.
Distributor: MGM / Sidney Kimmel Entertainment. Official website
“Maple Palm” (November 10), directed by Ralph Torjan.
Distributor: FAT Films. Official website
“What Is It?” (November 10), directed by Crispin Hellion Glover.