3 items from 2015
In the early morning of August 7, 1974; French high-wire artist Philippe Petit did the impossible. He and his accomplices snuck into the unfinished World Trade Center. Then strung a wire between the twin towers. New Yorkers awoke to the astonishing spectacle of Petit doing a tightrope walk across the 140 foot distance. Philippe Petit walked for forty-five glorious minutes without a safety harness. Garnering worldwide acclaim and accolades for his tour de force achievement. That story gets retold in the new drama The Walk.
Director Robert Zemeckis came across Petit's story in a children's book, The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordecai Gerstein. Zemeckis was totally unaware of Petit's walk. He was not only intrigued by the sheer bravado of Petit, but also his ingenious plan to fix the wire between the buildings. The 9/11 attack and the destruction of the Twin Towers is seared into our collective memories. Zemeckis felt »
For his latest trick he's retelling the story of Philippe Petit's astonishing tightrope walk between New York's Twin Towers in The Walk, pulling the audience 1,300 feet into the air for a dizzying 3D high-wire stunt alongside Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
Digital Spy caught up with Zemeckis for a wide-ranging chat about vertigo sufferers (allegedly) throwing up after seeing The Walk, his scepticism about Vr crossing into filmmaking and why Back to the Future 4 will never happen.
When did you know this was a movie you wanted to make?
"I came across Philippe's story when I saw a children's book called The Man Who Walked Between the Towers, it had beautiful illustrations of his adventure. That was it. I just thought, 'Oh my god!' Then I »
Though we're now seven years on from the release of dizzying documentary Man on Wire, which chronicled Philippe Petit's high-wire walk between the Twin Towers in 1974, Robert Zemeckis's Hollywood dramatisation still has an uphill battle to justify its own glossy IMAX 3D existence.
Man on Wire is both universally adored and enduring enough to feel like the first and last word on Petit's story, and yet its blend of archive footage and re-enactment do not add up to an immersive cinematic spectacle, which is what The Walk delivers in spades.
Zemeckis says he first heard of Petit from children's book The Man Who Walked Between The Towers, and there's a whimsical storybook quality to his approach: Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is presented up front as a raconteur, breaking the fourth wall to narrate his own story to us from atop the Statue of Liberty. With playful abandon Zemeckis zips »
3 items from 2015
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