Luca Guadagnino is currently on lockdown in Milan, Italy because of the coronavirus pandemic, but he tells Vulture in a new interview that he’s keeping busy with three projects in various stages of post-production. The most immediate to Guadagnino is his HBO series “We Are Who We Are,” which centers around the budding relationship between two teenagers living on an American military base in Italy. Guadagnino is also producing the next film from director Ferdinando Cito Filomarino, a drama starring John David Washington titled “Born to Be Murdered.” The director is also working on a documentary about the shoemaker Salvatore Ferragamo.
“Technology helps a lot, because you can work and give comments while people are doing the same in [their own] isolation,” Guadagnino says about working in Milan through the coronavirus outbreak. “I had a lot of work to do in Sweden and France because my collaborators are there. Before the lockdown the sentiment was, ‘Oh, you guys. We’re sorry for you guys.’ And now, look: France is in lockdown, Spain is in lockdown, Austria is in lockdown, Germany is in lockdown. It’s strange to be the first. You cannot see yourself as you’ve always thought of yourself, but at the same time, an ethical sense of responsibility and a sense of communion and collectivity makes you understand that you must do that.”
Guadagnino urges people to understand the coronavirus is a global issue and not just a problem in the respective countries where it has hit the hardest, including Italy and China. “This is not an Italian problem, as much as it wasn’t a Chinese problem,” the filmmaker says. “This is a pandemic, and it will hit hard sooner or later everywhere else. The Chinese Hubei region was two months prior to us, then Korea, then Japan, then Iran, then Italy, and now we are seeing that everywhere else it’s spreading. The worst that can happen is denial, misjudgment, or complacency. We must understand that this is something that regards everywhere and everyone. I think we are all at risk, every one of us.”
“Am I afraid?” Guadagnino asks himself. “I don’t know. I would be more afraid if I was older, to be honest. I’m afraid for the people I love.”
Guadagnino’s most recent release was his horror reimagining of “Suspiria,” which is now streaming on Amazon Prime. Before that the director had his most beloved film to date thanks to “Call Me by Your Name,” winner of the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay. HBO has not given any release info for “We Are Who We Are.”