DIRECTOR’S CHAIR: JAMES IVORY – ‘THE CITY OF YOUR FINAL DESTINATION’

From POST magazine:

NEW YORK — For over four decades, director James Ivory and producer Ismail Merchant of Merchant Ivory Productions endured as one of the most respected and fruitful collaborations in cinema. In fact, their acclaimed adaptations of such novels as “A Room With a View,” “Maurice,’ “Mr. & Mrs. Bridge,” “Howard’s End” and ‘The Remains of the Day” virtually established a whole genre of filmmaking — “the Merchant Ivory film.”
Now, following the untimely passing of Merchant, the team of Ivory and two-time Oscar-winning screenwriter Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, whose early novel “The Householder” was the basis for the first Merchant Ivory production of the same name, has released its 24th collaboration, The City of Your Final Destination.

Based on the 2002 novel of the same name by Peter Cameron, it reunites the director with Anthony Hopkins in a story about a young American academic, Omar Razaghi (Omar Metwally), who attempts to persuade the reluctant heirs of a celebrated Uruguayan novelist, Jules Gund, including his gay brother (Hopkins), widow (Laura Linney) and young mistress (Charlotte Gainsbourg), to allow him to write an authorized biography of the writer. Here, Ivory talks about making the film, his love of post and his long, prolific partnership with Merchant.

POST: How do you go about deciding what your next project will be and what made you choose this?
JAMES IVORY: “It was one of those rare things that happens when someone comes up to you and says, ‘When you read this book you’re going to want to make it into a film.’ And that only ever happened once before, when someone gave me ‘Remains of the Day.’ So I read this and I was immediately attracted to it.
“I loved the whole story and that it was set in South America where I’d never been, and all the relationships, and the long conversational dialogue. It all really appealed to me. But it wasn’t actually our next film at the time, around 2003, when I read the book. We went off to Shanghai to make The White Countess first, and then came back to this.”

…Read the rest at POST magazine

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