Robert Eggers on The Northman Directing is an Insane Job

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Robert Eggers on The Northman Directing is an Insane Job

“The Witch,” his Sundance Thriller Festival Best Director-winning horror film, stars Robert Pattinson and William Dafoe, and the 38-year-old director is still learning the ropes by making art house films like “The Lighthouse,” which also stars Pattinson and Dafoe.

For the private filmmaker, this is frequently the tipping moment where they decide whether to make a superhero movie or move to a streaming service to gain more creative freedom and a larger budget….

Robert Eggers on The Northman Directing is an Insane Job

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Robert Eggers on The Northman Directing is an Insane Job

An alternative is the $70 million Viking story “Northman,” which premiered in theatres on Friday. Alexander Skarsgard plays Amelith, a swordsman prince out for vengeance on his uncle (Ethan Hawke), who murdered his father (Nicole Kidman) and escaped to a secluded Icelandic town with his mother (Alexander Skarsgard).

The story is less complicated than in past Eggers works, but the filming is just as good. Directoring requires a certain amount of arrogance, as Eggers told me over coffee in Los Angeles. It’s a crazy job, since you have to ignore reality and invent your own version of it instead.

Aside from a few creative disagreements with production company New Regency over creative authority, making The Northman was no cakewalk. Even though the film was ready to shoot in March 2020, the pandemic put the movie on hold for several more months.

Eggers told me over a cup of coffee in Los Angeles, “It’s vital to have hubris to be a director.” “It’s a crazy job: You have to deny reality and be yourself.”

rom the director’s disagreements with New Regency over artistic control to producing the large-scale, outdoor conflicts of “The Northman,” nothing was simple about the production. Even if filming could begin in March 2020, the pandemic would cause delays in product development of several months.

The Northman’s production was no walk in the park, from the director’s battles with production company New Regency over creative freedom to the staging of his large-scale outdoor combat. Even though the film was ready to shoot in March 2020, the pandemic caused a delay of many months in production.

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Last Words

While there were a few tiny benefits to this latest setback, such as the weathering of the outdoor sets and lengthier Viking beards, Eggers’ meticulously groomed facial hair was kept in check: When I told him, he said, “The director shouldn’t allow that have the longest beard.” While working on The Lighthouse, I realised that having an alpha beard is essential.