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Interview sur "Sweeney Todd" et "Harry Potter" de Novembre 2007 :
QUESTION: WAS THE THOUGHT OF SINGING INTERESTING TO YOU? WAS THAT WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO THE PROJECT?
RICKMAN: Well, it was one of them. I suppose that it's in this life it's looking for the next high wire. So that was definitely one of them and then you just have to find out on a practical level if you can hit those notes. Some of them were a bit high. Then you've got to quickly find a singing teacher and work. So that was definitely an attraction.
QUESTION: HOW LONG DID YOU WORK WITH A COACH BEFOREHAND?
RICKMAN: I don't really remember. A while, maybe a month or so.
QUESTION: DO YOU ENJOY BEING THE REALLY BAD GUY OR DOES IT DEPRESS YOU IN A WAY?
RICKMAN: In this film? Well, who's bad or who's good, I don't judge the characters at all. I don't label them. And the bad guy never depresses me at all.
QUESTION: IS IT MORE FUN TO PLAY THE BAD GUY?
RICKMAN: Well, weirdly, I play it so rarely. I don't play it very often. It's just like maybe three times with big publicity budgets. But if you actually look at the work there's an awful lot of work there with no money for publicity and that. So if you look at it from that end of it, that end of the telescope and I'm looking down the other end of it. Indeed I have two other films coming out this year that are very different, but to me doing 'Sweeney Todd' was like, 'Whoa, this will be interesting.'
QUESTION: WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT MOVIES?
RICKMAN: One is at Sundance in January called 'Bottle Shock' and one opens in America in March called 'Nobel Son'.
QUESTION: WHAT SORTS OF CHARACTERS ARE THOSE?
RICKMAN: In 'Bottle Shock' I play somebody who's actually still alive. He's called Steven Spurrier and he's a wine expert and the film is about the true story of a 1976 blind wine tasting in Paris when the American wines beat the French with an all French jury. That's the story of it and we shot it in Sonoma which is where I've just come from.
QUESTION: SO THE ONLY EVIL PERSON IN THAT WOULD BE THE FRENCH?
RICKMAN: [laughs] I don't know. I think they're still cross. And the other one is an American winner of the Nobel Prize for Chemistry. My son kidnaps me in order to hold me to ransom to get the money from Sweden.
QUESTION: IS THAT BASED ON A TRUE STORY?
QUESTION: WHAT'S IT LIKE WORKING ON A TIM BURTON SET WITH JOHNNY DEPP WHO'VE DONE SO MUCH TOGETHER?
RICKMAN: No sense of your invading private territory. It's completely shared and open and you all work on this piece of work together, particularly with Johnny because he's very much a team player. You've just got problems to solve. So the vision and the imagination and the drive and the energy which is one thing. You're like a sponge as an actor. You just pick up what's wanted, what the tone is you're aiming for. Then there are practical problems. If you've got to sing and you're shaved it's not going to help if you've got foam right over your mouth. The next time you see the film, if you see it again, you'll see that just as he puts that stuff around my mouth I go like that so that when I open my mouth there's nothing on the lips. But it took a while to figure out how we were going to get around this. I'd be spitting it all the time.
QUESTION: IT LOOKED FANTASTIC. WAS IT ALL SHOT INSIDE?
RICKMAN: Indoors. All of Fleet Street was indoors, yeah.
QUESTION: WHAT WAS THE SET LIKE?
RICKMAN: I'm very connected to The Royal Academy where I trained and I rang them up and said, 'You've got to get the technical students down here to have a look at this. They won't see this again.' It was unbelievable craftsmanship and womenship on that set. It was amazing. Because of the bleaching out process you don't see so much of the detail that we saw and the clothes and everything. I mean, it's right that he did that so that you get that kind of dark sense of the world, but the actual detail of a sign over a door or what's going on in a shop window was phenomenal. It's just like food for your imagination which is what Tim said.
QUESTION: DID YOU RECORD YOUR SONGS WITH JOHNNY IN THE STUDIO TOGETHER OR SEPARATELY?
RICKMAN: Separately because they've got to have control, especially in a duet where they want to turn one up and one down. So it's a little odd to do that. The first time that we sang it together was miming it together [laughs]. But I could see why. All I did was say, 'Please could I go second so that I can hear him.' I know that he would have the lighter voice and he drives it so I needed to know what train I was jumping on. That sort of thing.
QUESTION: AS AN ACTOR GIVING A VOCAL PERFORMANCE, DO YOU CONSIDER IT ACTUALLY SINGING OR IS IT SORT OF AN EXTENSION OF THE ROLE THAT YOUR PLAYING, PART OF THE CHARACTER?
RICKMAN: That. But of course at the same time you don't want to flat or sharp or any of those awful things. So you've got to be singing too.
QUESTION: HAVE YOU SEEN A PRODUCTION OF 'SWEENEY TODD' BEFORE?
RICKMAN: One, two years ago in New York. It was the one where they all played musical instruments as the orchestra which was brilliant, but totally different of course.
QUESTION: SO THAT HAD NO BEARING ON WHAT YOU WERE DOING WITH THIS.
QUESTION: HOW DID YOUR WORK SCHEDULE PLAY INTO THE NEXT 'HARRY POTTER' FILM? DID YOU GO FROM ONE TO THE OTHER OR DID THEY OVERLAP AT ALL? I KNOW THAT IN 'HALF-BLOOD PRINCE' THERE'S A LOT OF SNAPE AND SO I WOULD IMAGINE THERE'S A LOT FOR YOU TO DO IN THAT FILM?
RICKMAN: Yeah, but they still have to get inside a certain period of time. I do seven weeks. I can't even remember when we shot the last one so I think – we shot 'Sweeney Todd' this year – it was over a year ago that I did 'Order of the Phoenix'.
QUESTION: SO YOU HAVEN'T STARTED ON THE NEXT ONE?
RICKMAN: They're doing it already. I start at the end of January.
QUESTION: HAD YOU SUNG BEFORE?
RICKMAN: Well, yes, in the sense that you come out of drama school and you're in 'Guys and Dolls' and God knows what in regional theater. Then when I did 'Private Lives' in London and on Broadway I sang a little. Well, Lindsay Duncan and I sang one Noel Coward song onstage, but it was so much part of the action that it wasn't like, 'And now we're going to sing.' So it's not quite the same as this, but yeah, I had a little bit before.
QUESTION: DO YOU ENJOY SINGING?
RICKMAN: I do. I'm only thinking about that because since the movie I kept up the singing lessons because it helps an enormous amount with speaking, one discovers. I have an incredibly sarcastic singing teacher and so when I say I enjoy it, he's so rude that it's sort of masochism. But I know something is happening that's making speaking better and breathing because it's just basically reminding me to breathe. Sometimes you forget to do that. It's great to find a discipline and work it.
QUESTION: IS IT POSSIBLE THAT SOMEONE COULD CONVINCE YOU TO GO ONSTAGE AND DO IT?
RICKMAN: Yeah, anything is possible. It just would have to depend on how high the notes are. That's what we're working on now, pulling that range up a bit.
QUESTION: ARE YOU A FAN OF THE BARBER CHAIR YOURSELF? IT LOOKS VERY SCARY. HAVE YOU HAD A REAL LIFE SHAVE?
RICKMAN: Once or twice, in one's life. I'm like most men. One's a bad shaver in the morning because you've only got three minutes to get out the door. So it's not a great skill.
QUESTION: A BIT OF BLOOD?
RICKMAN: Some blood. Then of course you've got three minutes to get out the door and now you have a piece of tissue paper stuck to you. It's the usual chaotic scene, I'm afraid.
QUESTION: WILL 'HARRY POTTER' BE AFFECTED BY THE SAG STRIKE AT ALL?
RICKMAN: No. It's written already, something like that.
QUESTION: THAT'LL COVER THE WRITER'S GUILD.
RICKMAN: Well, if the actor's come out then we'll be out, I suppose.
QUESTION: DON'T THEY USUALLY TAKE ABOUT NINE MONTHS TO FINISH THOSE FILMS?
RICKMAN: Watch the space, literally.
QUESTION: WITHOUT ANY SPOILERS THIS FILM DOES HAVE SOME SNAPES' BIG MOMENT.
RICKMAN: Well that's a spoiler, isn't it.
QUESTION: ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO THAT WITHOUT SAYING WHAT IT IS?
RICKMAN: Well, the only thing that I'll say is that for the first time shooting those films I know what I'm doing and why.
QUESTION: HAVE YOU READ AHEAD?
RICKMAN: That's what I mean by that.
QUESTION: YOU'VE READ THE SEVENTH BOOK?
RICKMAN: That's what I mean by that [laughs].
QUESTION: AS THE END OF THOSE THINGS DO YOU REGARD THAT WITH EITHER RELIEF OR SADNESS?
RICKMAN: It's a unique experience. I mean, where else is film history going to watch three kids grow up and the films actually growing up with them.
QUESTION: ARE YOU PROUD OF YOUR CONTRIBUTION TO THAT?
RICKMAN: I do the best that I can [laughs]. I'm very proud to be involved in it and part of world history.
QUESTION: ARE YOU COMFORTABLE WITH THE SEX SYMBOL STATUS THAT'S COME ALONG WITH THAT BECAUSE THERE'VE BEEN BLOG GROUPS OF WOMEN TALKING ABOUT YOU IN THAT SENSE?
RICKMAN: The world is weird. This is the thing. This is why 'Sweeney Todd' has only ever been relevant because there are apparently – I haven't looked – websites now where grown, mostly women, write porn and putting those characters together. So, 'Sweeney Todd' is a smallfry to the idea of that going on and this isn't even being done covertly. They have conventions and things.
QUESTION: HAVE YOU HAD ANY STRANGE ENCOUNTERS WITH THOSE FANS OR NOT?
RICKMAN: I think that every actor has.
QUESTION: CAN YOU TALK ABOUT IT OR NOT?
RICKMAN: No. I don't want to encourage it.
QUESTION: YOU DIRECTED SOME STAGE WORK. I SEE THAT YOU DID 'MY NAME IS RACHEL CORRIE'. DID THAT HAVE THE SAME SORT OF CONTROVERSY HERE AS IT DID IN THE U.S. WHEN THEY TRIED TO MOUNT IT?
RICKMAN: Well, we did it here first and because it was such a success here the New York production was important that it happened especially because, of course, she was American and it's part of the current American history. So it was very important that it go there. The controversy was the same everywhere. There were always people standing outside the theater handing out leaflets. Fair enough. Everybody can have their point of view, but it usually drifted away eventually when people actually bothered to read it or come and see it rather than making assumptions.
QUESTION: WOULD YOU LIKE TO TAKE THAT FURTHER INTO MOVIES, OR DIRECTING IN GENERAL?
RICKMAN: I did direct a movie which I'm very proud of called 'The Winter Guest' and now I look with horror and find out that it was ten years ago. How did that happen? Because you get caught up in movies and making them and you're time gets eaten up.
QUESTION: AND DIRECTING PLAYS DOESN'T FILL THE SAME SPACE?
RICKMAN: Well, no, because you direct a movie and that's a year or so of your life. Pre-production. Shooting the movie is a short period of time. Before it and after it is what eats it up. But I do have plans to direct again. It's just organizing your day.
QUESTION: DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA WHAT IT WOULD BE?
RICKMAN: I do, yeah. One completely original script called 'A Little Chaos' which is about the building of a fountain at the court of Louis the XIIII in Versailles. Then another one I don't think I can talk about because I haven't had the meeting in New York yet, but that's happening next week while we do the premiere.