*UPDATED* Added HQ Scans (@korita05) TRANSLATED INTERVIEW: When Robert Pattinson Is Interviewed By Romain Gavras For GQ France – EPIC!

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HQ SCANS:

Thank you @korita05!

TRANSLATED INTERVIEW:

Translation by Laura, please credit if used!

Rare are the actors who fight against their image. Even Leonardo DiCaprio did not go as far. He first played with his status, let it flourish and then shifted his gear when he had no choice anymore. Robert Pattinson put a mad energy to scratch his young first lead man persona which just began. As if, and that’s probably the case, to be free of the supernatural attraction he has on people was the sine qua none condition to his mental health well being. As if he has to distance himself from the sublime to come back to the living. Nevertheless the British actor accumulate handicaps. A saga for teenagers with a worldwide success and a handsome out of the norm beauty. If, since 2012 and the end of the ‘Twilight’ saga he only appears in indy movies (David Cronenberg, Werner Herzog, Anton Corbijn, James Gray…) his media double and this Edward Cullen character still provokes sensations to the young girls. With ‘Good Time’ from Josh & Ben Safdie, he nears his goal. In his career and in his life in general, there is a before and an after ‘Good Time’. As fascinated by his face as Cronenberg was, the Safdie brothers, New Yorkers directors of this dark and violent thriller, film Pattinson for the first to last second. Roaming the Queens streets with swollen eyes, Connie, his character, is an anti-hero, really not sympathetic whose Pattinson shares all his ambivalence to. Because Rob is a complex guy. When we meet with him in Paris for the photo shoot he is bafflingly polite and shy. Often, his eyes go to his face in the mirror, smiles accompany his sentences – which he rarely ends – and he goes really quickly red in the face. He is famous, does not stop working and think he has earned the right not to talk. Because as well educated as he is, Pattinson does not talk. After the ‘Twilight’ traumatism – the nomad life to run away from fans and paparazzi, his relatives being harassed-, he dodges, he cheats on his answers and goes top interviews after interviews without giving himself away. So to counteract his ways, we decided to ask the help of his good friend, the director Romain Gavras, who worked with him in 2013 for the Dior ad and who is currently finishing up his second movie. A comedy with Karin Leklou, Isabelle Adjani, Vincent Cassel and Oulaya Amamra. Little prodigy of viral clips, of ads heckling the brands, and co-founder of the Collectif Kourtrjamé, Romain Gavras film the ultra violence and the nihilism of the fakeness era nowadays. He is often flirting with polemic and it’s not something Rob dislikes. Their meeting has to be in Paris, or maybe London? The always there publicist of the actor loses track, we do too. When one of them is in Los Angeles the other one is in Greece. When one is available the other one disappeared in thin air. ‘Catch me if you can’. They have fun with the closed system of promotion which follows the release of a movie with a super Hollywoodian star. There won’t be any meeting – at least not officially – but a WhatsApp convo suggested by Romain Gavras. He is, at that time, in Italy where he is editing his movie. Pattinson is on promo tour in New York. We will never know the exact date of this conversation but we know that it started pointly at 5:49PM ended at 7:07PM. Here it is. In its own juice.

5:49PMRomain Gavras: Add me as contact

5:49:05RG: Hey it’s Romain!

5:55:36 – Robert Pattinson: Is this thing working?

5:56:00 RG: YES!

5:56:09RG: You okay there?

5:56:28 – RP: Yeah and you?

06:01:04RG: Yes, I’m in Tuscany. I finished filming my movie last week. Taking a few days off. Do you have some time right now?

06:01:48 – RP: Yeah I do, I’m in New York right now. I looked everywhere for a working internet signal but I think it’s my shitty computer messing up with it!

06:02:02RG: hahaha

06:02:28RG: Well mine is just fine!

06:03:03 RG: So. I don’t really know what we’re supposed to do, the GQ people only told me: ‘just talk informally with Rob, talk about everything and nothing’

06:03:48 – RP: Yeah, I guess you’re under pressure now, but that sounds good.

06:04:32RG: Let’s try to not make it the worse interview in the world and let’s try to say clever things. Oh, and also, we can just solve some worldwide conflicts…

06:05:23 – RP: I’m down with it!

06:06:22 – RP: How’s the movie going?

06:06:47RG: Very well, I am super happy with the images and the actors, cannot wait to edit it. And cannot wait to film another one. I love being on set, it makes me lose weight!

06:07:10 – RP: Losing weight while filming? Crazy, it never happens usually!

06:07:36RG: I did not see ‘Good Times’ yet. Can you tell me about it?

06:08:14</strong – RP: Okay, so first, the title is ‘Good Time’ not ‘Good Times’. Everyone makes the mistake, none of the journalists wrote it right…

06:06:45</strong – RG: Oh okay! If I did not see it it’s because I would prefer seeing it on the big screen. But everyone around me have seen it, even the haters, they told me you were incredible.

06:08:55 – Robert Pattinson sends a picture of the movie ‘Good Times’

06:09:04RG: Oh man, stopping right away!

06:11:23 – RP: Anyway, it’s fantastic people love the movie, I thought it would divide the audience. Morally talking, my character is ambiguous. In reality, he is even a real asshole, even, under certain aspects, a narcissistic psychopath. But the movie presents him kinda like an action movie super hero. Usually, the audience does not like a character with two entirely opposite facets. But here, for an unknown reason, it does not seem to bother them.

06:11:26 – RP: I am not sure what I just said is comprehensible.

06:12:04RG: It’s crystal clear! You make me want to see it!

06:12:28 – RP: One more ticket sold, one! Only you just go to a private viewing so it does not count!

06:13:08RG: It’s weird that the fun side of anti-heroes just disappeared from pop culture. Before, even in blockbusters, we loved guys like Josh McLane in ‘Die Hard’, when really he was an unworthy alcoholic father.

06:15:07 – RP: True. I think, nowadays, people want pop culture to give them back a certain image of themselves. So naturally, no one wants to have a loser’s face thrown back at them.

06:15:21RG: But those are the most interesting characters to follow. And I think people are ready to follow maniac heroes, it’s kind of cathartic.

06:16:11 – RP: If a character does not follow ethic codes, the audience is more surprised by his/her path. And for an actor, it’s more interesting to play.

06:17:01RG: Yeah I can imagine. I think we saw one another when you were filming in New York. You told me some scenes were filmed in the subway with authorization or anything. Did I get that right?

06:18:03 – RP: Yeah, we had few authorizations. But I am not sure I can talk about this. The Safdie brothers who directed the movie heard me talk about it the other day and just asked me to shut up hahaha! Not sure how it works legally talking. Could the New York City council stop the release of the movie? But let’s just say it was crazy. We filmed in a Domino’s pizza in Quens. We had to hide money in the roof and had to fight out loud but the place was still open… So some patrons actually called us on it!

06:19:34RG: Must have been fun! Did anyone recognize you?

06:20:36 – RP: The limit between fiction and reality was really thin for this filming. And cameras were rolling from afar so passerbys did not know it was for a movie. When we had to film a chase sequence in a Chinatown mall, the actors playing cops who were supposed to chase us had to avoid tripping because people tried to stop them as they thought it was real! It was crazy. Also, some actors are real police officers and even without working they arrested people who tried to stop them!

06:21:37RG: That’s cool to play with it, between fiction and reality, and to not have to explain everything to the actors. Essentially for violence scenes. To the stunt people, you tell them it is a rehearsal but to the actor you just tell them ‘We’re just going to do it in one take, go ahead, break his fucking neck!’ And right there you have something so realistic.

06:22:47RG: You can feel the fear in their eyes.

06:22:50RG: Confusion

06:23:13RG: Anyway, there it is, I want to see the movie so bad.

06:23:38 – RP: hahaha! Wait, is it how you prepare yourself for fight scenes in your movies? That’s why I love them so much.

06:23:54 – RP: You just film real violence, hahaha!

06:25:59RG: Thanks!

06:24:25RG: You have to manipulate the people because it is always more credible when it hurts a bit.

06:25:14 – RP: I have always wanted to work like that, but the problem is, people get scared. Nevertheless, you have to hit pretty strongly so it can hurt. And with the adrenaline, I think we feel the pain less! But I can understand it could be upsetting when you have to redo scenes twenty times…

06:26:27RG: Coming back to my kinda stupid question, no one recognized you?

06:27:39 – RP: Nope, not even once. In reality, if you’re dirty and looking lost, you can be sure people are going to avoid your eyes. Some may have thought the guy looked like me but they ignored me pretty quickly. Good, because if they had recognized me we would have never been able to make the movie.

06:30:18RG: Now I am going to try to make a serious analysis of your career. You had the good idea to distance yourself from your first image. When we made the Dior ad together, I thought about the way to make this label disappear. And I found the solution, which stayed mainstream: to film you in black and white. I don’t know if that makes any sense, but I tell myself that each actor has luggage and an own iconography and it’s always interesting to just divert them and to try to distance them from the idea the audience has of them. But not making it the first goal, without going opposite to it.

06:38:47 – RP: Yes, it’s interesting to see how many different faces you can make credible to the audience’s eyes. It’s a real struggle because making movies, you just reinforce the presumptions in the public’s mind. And you have to take those into account when you prepare for a new role. It’s sometimes easier to have a radically different character for each movie when the movie itself is in a completely different kind of world. I understood that with David Cronenberg. When we start watching the movie, pretty quickly we cannot judge my performance without taking into account everything around. The movie just imposes a strange universe that the audience has to try to understand. I don’t know if what I am saying is clear, but, in any way, I prefer those kind of situations to more basic tales where the character is defined by his particularities and his stereotypes.

06:39:10 – RP: I think that I should cut my answers before sending them, hahaha!
06:40:13RG: Man, don’t worry, I totally get what you mean! Did you see ‘Otto e Mezzo’ by Fellini? There’s this French actress (Madeleine Lebeau) who is always going to Mastroianni, who plays the director, and who asks him ‘Meastro, I would like to talk about my characteeeer.’ I think actors can sometimes lose themselves when they’re obsessed by their character. They should see the movie as a big everything, as a world in itself

06:45:53 – RP: I agree 100%. On the ‘Good Time’ set, no one had the same opinion about my character. And that’s what is interesting: when an actor acts a certain way and then the director and editor put it in the other way. But anyway, from the moment you put energy, commitment ion your performance, it will make something in the end.

06:49:14RG: I totally agree! In a movie, there’s always a out of control part, even more when it’s good. In French, we have this phrase ‘Mettre le film dans la boîte’ which sums that up pretty well. (Put the movie in the box). Sometimes we feel something floating in the air and we have to catch it to put it in the box or it is going to disappear. And months of rehearsals don’t change it. So, apart from that, what are you going to do next?

06:49:53 – RP: The Claire Denis movie (‘High Life’ for 2018). If we succeed filming it. Fingers crossed. It has been three years in preparation. But we’re doing it, it is going to be incredible.

06:50:35RG: Oh yeah, I worked with the designer for my movie. Aren’t they supposed to start filming right about now?

06:51:46 – RP: Really? I hope so, great if it’s true. I was so taken into ‘Good Time’ promo so I don’t really know what’s going on there. I am supposed to go filming as soon as I finish up with interviews. Even if, with indy movies, we never know if the movie is going to fail at last minute. I would love to be two months in a row in a post production room like you are going to. It would be a dream of mine. I am so envious right now.

06:52:30RG: Anyway, crossing fingers for you guys. Claire Denis is an incredible director. And yes, I cannot wait to edit my movie, but I leave it to an editor first. Before, I was doing it first thing myself but now I prefer going there a bit later on. I tell myself it is better for the movie. And I leave it to my genius editor, he is working on his version, brings new ideas, and then I go with him, I redo things or I take some of his ideas. Ideas he would have never had if I was next to him, a little bit annoyed, to stop him from trying things. But right now it’s hard because I have to wait a week and I am starting to get antsy. I dream of the movie every night, I dream we forgot materials or that I walk around the set without a camera.

06:55:48 – RP: hahaha!

06:56:50 – RP: I can relate to that. But for me, it’s real: someone says action and I am just there wondering what the hell am I doing here, standing in total void. It happens to me at least once a day on set.

06:57:03RG: Not bad!

06:57:56RG: Once I dreamed I was directing ‘Beverly Hills Cop 6’ with Adam Sandler who talked with a Chinese accent and I did not know what to do!

06:58:38 – RP: That’s an amazing pitch! If I was a studio exec, I would sign this project right away. But you would have to direct first ‘Beverly Cops 4’! And I want to be in that!

06:59:03RG: You would play Adam Sandler playing Eddie Murphy with a Chinese accent?! Okay, let’s do this!

06:59:55 – RP: In reality, it would do me no problem because I act like I was another actor. I play each scene thinking that in reality, today, it’s my birthday and no one knows. It’s the advice I would give if I was teaching drama.

07:00:09RG: Hahaha!

07:00:42 – RP: ‘Your mother died today but today is also your birthday and no one knows.’

07:02:23RG: I kinda like the idea.

07:02:26 – RP: creating yin and yang.

07:03:00RG: I love that we went from a very articulate convo to an ultra cryptic one!

07:04:37 – RP: Of course! In reality, I just realize it is easier for me to do this kind of interview! When I meet with a journalist and that there’s silence I feel so ill at ease and I have the tendency to fill the blanks by saying crap. And in the end, I always regret everything I said. In the next fifteen days, I have to go on quite a lot of TV shows to promote the movie and it did not happen for quite a long time so I’m overstressed to the idea of going.

07:05:38RG: Yeah, interviews like that are better! You have to be quite a mad machine o succeed being funny and clever on TV shows all the time. I am always freaked out by too at ease actors there.

07:06:20 – RP: They’re just good at it. They’re not capable of love.

07:06:28RG: HAHAHAHAHA!

07:06:32RG: Man.

07:06:44RG: that’s the best conclusion possible.

07:06:49RG: We have to stop it right there!

07:07:02 – RP: Okay! Cool. Thanks man! 🙂

07:07:08RG: Thanks to you! 🙂

Video Teaser from GQ:

 

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