Catching up with Pattinson as he did press rounds for "Cosmopolis," he filled us in on what we might expect from Michôd's follow-up to his crime drama "Animal Kingdom." Set to shoot next year, "The Rover" boasts some pretty big ideas behind its deceptively simple set up. "It's a kind of a western," Pattinson explained. "It's very existential. It's really interesting. I couldn't really explain to you what it's about but it's sort of about how much pain can the world take and how much disgust and cruelty before love dies. I think that's kind of what it's about." (Cronenberg, who was in the room, chimed in with: " That sounds pretty heavy!")
Pattinson will co-star in the film with Guy Pearce, with the near-future-set story centering on a man who journeys across the Australian outback to find his stolen car, which contains something invaluable to him. However, Pattinson admits that perhaps his description might be a little more highfalutin than the actual movie. "David Michôd's going to read this and be like 'What the fuck are you talking about? It's a crime movie,' " he said with a laugh.
As for when "The Rover" is coming out, Pattinson admitted it is later than he originally wanted. "I wish it was shooting this fall," he said. "I was supposed to be doing this movie this fall but that was pushed to after 'The Rover,' which is a good thing because it needs a ton of work. But I really wish I could move 'The Rover' up. I've got to find something else to do."
ETA: Added more from Rob and Cronenberg's interview with The Playlist (click to read full article)
When it came down to casting, Cronenberg had to ask some essential questions: "How old is this character? How old are the actors around? Who can do the New York accent even if they're not from around there? Who has the star power to get you financing, which is always an issue?" Finally the director decided on Pattinson, best known for his role as vampire Edward Cullen in the insanely popular "Twilight" series. Even with Cronenberg's considerable cache, it took him a while to sell Pattinson on the project. Ten days, to be exact.
"I suddenly realized I had no idea how to do it at all," Pattinson said, seeming slightly embarrassed about the whole episode. "I knew it was really good but I was terrified of even calling. Actors are always trained to bullshit, even if you hate something. And I had nothing to say, at all. Because David did the script he obviously knows what it's about. As soon as I said, 'I don't know what it's about,' and he said, 'Me neither.'" And while that was reassuring to the actor, it wasn't the end. "Then I spent a week trying to figure out how to get out of it, where I got to the point where I was going to have to call up and say, 'I'm too scared because I don't think I'm a good enough actor and I'm a pussy.' I didn’t want to have that conversation."
Thankfully that conversation didn't happen, mostly because Cronenberg assured Pattinson that he was "absolutely the right person" for the role. And with Pattinson, the movie had an actual fighting chance of getting made (with a lesser box office draw, this would have been more or less an impossibility). "Well it was certainly a thrill to be able to help it get made… Especially one like this," Pattinson said. The actor said that Cronenberg was so legendary that Pattinson wasn't even sure he was still making movies. "He's one of those directors where he's not even on a level of 'Oh yeah I really want to work with him.'" That's when Pattinson turned to Cronenberg and lovingly said, "You have an adjective!" To which Cronenberg exclaimed (with a kind of demented glee): "Cronenbergian!" Pattinson then continued: "It's kind of changed my whole perception of who I can work with. There are people who I grew up watching who are so part of the film language that you don't even realize that they're still making movies." Cronenberg then shot back: "That they're still alive! Which is what he's trying to say."
Whatever Cronenberg ends up shooting next, he would like Pattinson to come along for the ride. "We had a great time and we just know we could do something really cool together," Cronenberg said, noting that the long-gestating Bruce Wagner project "Map to the Stars" "could be" one of those projects. "We just don't know what it is. So if you've got any ideas, please let us know."