Saturday, September 23

George Clooney: “Trusting your career in the opinions of others is dangerous”

Julia Roberts and George Clooney on September 7 at the premiere of ‘Journey to Paradise’ in London. / EFE

The actor returns to the romantic comedy in ‘Journey to Paradise’ with Julia Roberts in their fifth film together

The British Ol Parker, director of ‘Now and Forever’ and ‘Mamma Mia! Again and Again’, brings together two titans of cinema on the big screen: Julia Roberts and George Clooney in ‘Journey to Paradise’ which opens on September 9. The film tells the story of a divorced couple, not without acrimony, played by Roberts and Clooney, who travel to Bali to prevent their daughter from getting married and making the same mistake they made 25 years ago. ‘Journey to Paradise’ marks the return of Julia Roberts, the queen of romantic comedy, to a genre that she dominates like few actresses throughout history and her reunion with George Clooney after previously sharing cameras in ‘Money Monster’ (2016 ), ‘Ocean’s Eleven’ (2011) and ‘Ocean’s Twelve’ (2004).

-Why did you decide to do Journey to Paradise? She hasn’t filmed a romantic comedy in more than twenty years.

-I haven’t shot a romantic comedy for almost thirty years. It was important for me to work with the queen of romantic comedies, but since she couldn’t take the job, I work with Julia (she jokes). Actually, Julia is the queen.

-It seems that there is a lot of camaraderie between you. When did you meet?

-We met for the first time with Steven Soderbergh in a hotel in Las Vegas before the filming of ‘Ocean’s Eleven’ and we were making jokes for five hours. It has always been very easy for us to get along. When they sent us the script for ‘Journey to Paradise’, the director sent it to both Julia and me at the same time. I called Julia and said: Have you read this? And she replied: I’m reading it right now. And I replied: The only way to do it is with you. She agreed and we did it. It’s fun to work with friends.

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Trailer for ‘Journey to Paradise’.

-This is your fifth collaboration together. Don’t you need to rehearse?

Julia and I know each other quite well.

-Were you forced to create your own bubble against covid to film the movie?

-I think it’s important to remember that what we have to do with this compared to what the rest of the world was going through is nothing. The people of Australia really had very hard and firm rules, but they put their heads down and went through and took a big sacrifice. We, if the United States had done that, we would have thousands of people alive today. So what they did was extremely brave and for us to enter is nothing. We just had to step in and had some hiccups, but they went through a long, hard quagmire, so we were very honored to be around people who were dealing with things so seriously.

'Journey to Paradise': Julia Roberts and George Clooney can't even see each other

-What would you highlight about the director?

-The truth is this. We were very lucky. She wrote a beautiful script, showed up and literally got the actors that she wanted. She had to make us all pay attention and there was nothing but fun and gentleness. We didn’t have a single bad day on set and that’s a very rare thing.

-There is a scene where their characters drunkenly dance to the song ‘Gonna Make You Sweat’.

-In that scene I didn’t have to rehearse. I have been training for years (laughs). It was fun watching the younger actors gawk at us as Julia and I shot that scene.

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George Clooney and Kaytlin Dever in ‘Journey to Paradise’.

-Would you say that it is a spontaneous and improvised film by the actors?

-Let me defend the writer on this one, because writers really hate to hear that. We actors stick to the dialogue and then decide which dialogue to play with in each scene. The director gave us freedom, but there were very good dialogues written for us to interpret, although I must admit that Julia’s best lines were written by her.

-You and Roberts are also producers on the film. What drives them to take that side of the industry?

-I think that as you grow in this business it is important to diversify and find other ways to participate. You take the pressure off yourself by not paying attention to what the casting director thinks of you or how you’re aging as an actor. To avoid that situation you have to write, direct and produce. This was a production that didn’t need much from us. We’re just helping with distribution. Julia and I, she is also producing a lot, as we get older we need to have other irons in the fire. You can’t trust other people’s opinions because that’s dangerous.

Julia Roberts and Lucas Bravo in ‘Journey to Paradise’.

Julia Roberts: “I enjoyed torturing George”

“I like to make people laugh,” admits Julia Roberts. “If anything has motivated George and me to make this film, it’s being able to bring joy to others. Every time we were shooting and we heard the laughter from the crew behind the monitor, we knew we’d nailed the scene and allowed ourselves to move on. Working in an environment like this was really wonderful. We were on an island with no escape from each other, sharing a space in a unique way. That allowed us to get to know each other and enjoy each other because we weren’t close to home and we couldn’t go to our lives after work.”

Roberts has earned title by title the affection of half the world and the admiration of his teammates. In fact, Clooney would not have shot this film had she not been committed to her character. “I enjoyed this opportunity because it allowed me to be sarcastic with George, it really stood out to me that I could torture him. Seeing him pathetically in love with me without being able to do anything about it amused me a lot »jokingly replies the actress, sitting next to Clooney. ‘Journey to Paradise’. Roberts has also become a champion of feminism. “We have to come together as a society to stand up to this predatory behavior, to help victims find their voices and their cure and to stop this once and for all,” she has stated about the harassment. This 2022 continues to demonstrate her full scope with ‘Journey to Paradise’ and next October the actress will receive the Icon Award from the Film Academy Museum in recognition of the global cultural impact of her career. “I think it would be very unfair not to recognize the director’s work on this film because he was brave and funny and kind and wonderful. He faced a very rebellious group of actors and he understood that. He treated us as individuals and he knew how to guide us in this way in a way that comes across in the film ».

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