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Surviving Picasso (1996) Poster

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Merchant Ivory Productions faced strong objections from Francoise Gilot and her son, Claude, when making this film. Claude Picasso met once with the Merchant-Ivory team but then strongly objected to the making of the film, petitioning the studio to stop production. Gilot had written her story in the book "Life with Picasso" in 1964, which Picasso had tried to stop from being published; the filmmakers were unable to acquire the rights. Instead they used Arianna Huffington's "Picasso: Creator and Destroyer" as the basis for Ruth Prawer Jhabvala's script.
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A few years after this film, Anthony Hopkins had already signed on to play Hannibal Lecter again in Hannibal (2001), but Jodie Foster had declined. When director Ridley Scott let Hopkins know what actresses were being considered to play Clarice, Hopkins remembered how much he enjoyed working with Julianne Moore on this film, and recommended her.
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Reproductions of Picasso's art work were not allowed to be used in the film; however, the estates of Henri Matisse and Georges Braque allowed their work to be represented.
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Hopkins ate the same diet as Pablo Picasso during filming.
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The film cast includes two Oscar winners: Anthony Hopkins and Julianne Moore; and one Oscar nominee: Joan Plowright.
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Marlon Brando was once interested in playing Pablo Picasso and was trying to reduce weight on a banana diet.
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Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert De Niro were considered for the leads.
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Joss Ackland played author C.S. Lewis in a television production of Shadowlands (1985). Anthony Hopkins played Lewis in the film Shadowlands (1993).
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Anthony Hopkins is a close friend and frequent collaborator with director Richard Attenborough, who has his own extensive collection of Picasso prints.
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One of four theatrical feature film collaborations of actor Anthony Hopkins and Merchant Ivory Productions. The titles are Howards End (1992), The Remains of the Day (1993), Surviving Picasso (1996), and The City of Your Final Destination (2009).
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