The Neon Demon (2016) Poster


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The film was shot in chronological order and the ending was created and improvised on set, according to Elle Fanning.
Elle Fanning was 16 years old when the film was shot and 18 years old when the film premiered.
One of the film's most striking features is its use of color. In an interview Nicolas Winding Refn stated that he is in fact colorblind and can only perceive contrast and primary colors.
The second film by Nicolas Winding Refn to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival that received booing and cheering after the press showing. The first film was Only God Forgives (2013).
Nicolas Winding Refn made Elle Fanning watch Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970) for her preparation.
Elle Fanning replaced Carey Mulligan after she dropped out due to scheduling conflicts. Had she remained this would have been her second collaboration with Refn after Drive (2011), and her second collaboration with Jena Malone after Pride and Prejudice (2005).
Throughout production, when filming was to resume, director Nicolas Winding Refn wouldn't yell "Action!" to set things in motion. Instead he yelled "Violence, motherf*****s".
Cliff Martinez, who worked on the film's soundtrack, described the movie as a mix between Valley of the Dolls (1967) and The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974). According to him the first half is a melodrama like Valley of the Dolls while the second half is a horror film like The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.
This is the first female-led film directed by Nicolas Winding Refn. He approached Elle Fanning for revisions of the female character's dialogue in order to make it sound more authentic.
The film is dedicated to Nicolas Winding Refn's wife, Liv Corfixen. Corfixen also appears in the film as a restaurant guest in the "Beauty is not everything. It's the only thing" scene. According to Refn, this is one of his few films his wife liked.
Nicolas Winding Refn allegedly chose to film at The Paramour Mansion because it's rumored to be haunted.
The mansion at the end of the film is the location where they filmed the ending to Scream 3 (2000).
Originally, a crew member was going to break the mirror in the bathroom. However, when he hit the mirror with a heavy vase, nothing happened. Nicolas Winding Refn panicked. So in a last minute effort, he asked Abbey Lee to throw a trashcan into the mirror in one shot, hoping for the best. On the first take, the mirror broke in a hundred pieces. This is the shot that was used in the film.
In the nightclub ladies' room scene, Ruby says the shade of lipstick being applied is called Red Rum, a reference to the infamous quote from The Shining (1980).
Elle Fanning, Jena Malone, Bella Heathcote, and Abbey Lee had to endure a lot of fake movie blood during production, even having to taste a portion of it. The crew made it taste like syrup, in order to make it more pleasing for the performers.
In an interview, Nicolas Winding Refn was told the film felt in a way alien and foreign, to which he responded that the idea of the film was it would eventually become a science-fiction movie.
When director of photography Natasha Braier read the script, she didn't really like it and when meeting with Nicolas Winding Refn, she told him honestly what wasn't working for her. He smiled, and replied, "Oh, you got the fake script".
Keanu Reeves improvised the line "Room Two-Fourteen! Gotta be seen!"
Star Elle Fanning reveals in the movie's commentary that she kept her eyes open for so long for the opening shot that her contact lenses were burned onto her eyes by the hot lights.
Nicolas Winding Refn's first film shot in the anamorphic format.
The film was originally titled "I Walk With the Dead" and it was said to have Carey Mulligan as the lead.
To get the right look for the scene between Jesse and Dean, before the mountain lion appears, cinematographer Natasha Braier smeared the lens with grease from her own unwashed hair.
It was rumored the movie would be shot in 60 frames per second (fps). However, director Nicolas Winding Refn stated he only shot in 60 fps for one slow-motion scene.
The contortionist bondage in the show that Jesse and Ruby watch was actually a crew member that volunteered to be put in bondage.
Longest feature film directed by Nicolas Winding Refn as of its release.
Abbey Lee served as a unofficial advisor for the film, regarding details about the fashion world. Lee gave Refn intel about how an audition for models would play out, down to the things that the casting directors would have on their table. Abbey Lee also taught Elle Fanning how to do the proper catwalk as a professional model would do.
Amazon Studios acquired the distribution rights to the film in November 2015.
The speech that Sarno recites in the cafe when he is talking about having wanted to be an actor is an excerpt from the "Once More Unto the Breach" speech from William Shakespeare's "Henry V".
There was issues with casting the part of Dean. A lot of the actors auditioning tried to impersonate Ryan Gosling and it was not until Gaspar Noé suggested Karl Glusman the producers found an actor that worked. Both previously worked on Love (2015), which was Glusman's film debut.
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Nicolas Winding Refn's second feature film shot in Los Angeles.
There are various references to the work of Stanley Kubrick throughout the film. One of the models mentions a lipstick shade, "Red Rum" (The Shining), Keanu Reeves' character compares the girl in 214 to Lolita and several pivotal scenes occur in/around bathrooms, Kubrick's trademark.
Alessandro Nivola was originally supposed to play the part of Jack, but due to commitments to a play in London, he could not play the part due to how the schedule, which had the film shot in chronological order. Nivola and Nicolas Winding Refn still wanted him in the film, so Refn cast him in the part of the fashion designer. The part was originally smaller and written as a woman. Also the mustache Nivola fashion was grown for the play and could not be shaven. However Refn liked it and thought it added to the character.
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Christina Hendricks plays the head of a prestigious modeling agency. Hendricks herself was once a model.
The character of Ruby is based on Alejandro Jodorowsky.
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Jena Malone played Lydia Bennet in Pride & Prejudice (2005) while Bella Heathcote played Jane Bennet in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (2016).
This is the second collaboration between actors Christina Hendricks, Elle Fanning, and Alessandro Nivola. The first was Ginger & Rosa (2012), where Hendricks, Fanning and Nivola played mother daughter and father.
Jena Malone's second time playing a lesbian character in 2016 after appearing in Lovesong (2016).
The first movie for which Elle Fanning recorded a commentary. She is accompanied by Nicolas Winding Refn.
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Feature film debut of Jamie Clayton.
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In the opening and closing credits the cast is credited in order of appearance.
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The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Refn stated in a Q&A that the infamous morgue scene with Ruby and the corpse was improvised on set, originally having Ruby only kiss the corpse on the lips, Jena Malone went further and proceeded to molest the corpse.
Abbey Lee accidentally punched Elle Fanning for real during the fight scene. Because of Fanning's genuine reaction Nicolas Winding Refn ended up using that take for the final cut.
The scene where Jessie kisses herself in a mirror was improvised by Elle Fanning.

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