Wally Pfister Speaks About The Dark Knight Rises

Wally Pfister on The Dark Knight set

Cinematographer extraordinaire Wally Pfister gave an exciting and tantalizing phone interview to the Kevin and Josh Movie Show last friday that touched on subjects like Inception, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. Wally is a friend of the show’s and loves to talk film with the hosts, who are huge Christopher Nolan fans — to the point where I am surprised they didn’t found this site themselves. They do their best to pick Wally’s brain for information and insight. Thankfully Wally is a really cool dude and talks about everything he can talk about without getting himself fired. I’ll do my best to sum up what I though was the most fascinating or exciting, but I’ll also include a link to the audio file of the show below so you can hear it all for yourself.

After discussing Inception and the disappointment with some of its Oscar nominations, or lack of rather, the hosts praise Chris and Wally’s use of practical effects and stunts in their action sequences. They then ask Wally how Nolan can top The Dark Knight? “I asked the same question,” Wally responded. “I read the script 2 weeks ago, and he’s done it. Plain and simple — he’s done it. It’s a phenomenal script. He’s still in the process of cutting it back because it’s a very long script right now, but it’s really phenomenal. And he actually had me go back and wanted me to watch, in IMAX, Batman Begins and The Dark Knight again. When I watched those I had read the script for The Dark Knight Rises and was like, ‘dude, it is a perfect trilogy.’ I think that was his intent, to work off those two pictures — and they are very different pictures. And it’s funny, we all had different opinions about which picture we like better.”

They went on to talk about various rumors and location scouting. Wally mentions Nolan and production designer Nathan Crowley were in New York and all over the world looking for locations. Kevin and Josh also bring up the screen tests for The Dark Knight Rises, which Wally mentions he shot himself. This excites the hosts a bit and they inquire about Anne Hathaway’s screen test, to which Wally replies, “She’s so good. She did an incredible job. She is a great, great actress.” He then says something very vague and possibly controversial: “And she looked phenomenal in the wardrobe.” Of course this could mean anything, but Wally did assert that he could say no more without getting in trouble, which in it of itself is sort of an answer to what it actually means. Or so it would seem.

Returning once again to the “How can you top it?” question, the hosts talk about shooting action and shooting for IMAX. Wally answers by saying, “We’re going to try, man. Our goal is to shoot as much in IMAX as we can. We’re going to put in on the screen, and put it on the screen big. And I really encourage everyone to see it in IMAX if they can because we’re really going for it this time. In terms of the action, we are all scratching our heads right now trying to figure out how we’re going to do it; how we’re going to do it in the amount of time we’re going to do it in. The opening scene of the movie will blow your mind.”

So there you have it. Prepare for mind explosion, people. I can quote no more without making Wally’s cool demeanor and responses sound lame. You can hear the audio from the radio show by clicking here, or using the embedded player below. Enjoy.

by Teddy Blass