Dreams News Bulletin: October 2000
Edited by Phil Stubbs

In this Issue...
1. Quixote Shoot Underway
2. Gilliam confirms Good Omens is to follow Quixote
3. Gilliam honoured at Sitges Film Festival
4. Charles Alverson reports from revolution in Belgrade
5. PocketEssentials Competition Results
6. Join the Dreams MessageBoard...

Gilliam at the Quixote preproduction office, Summer 2000

1. Quixote Shoot Underway
Terry Gilliam began directing the location photography for The Man Who Killed Don Quixote in Spain on Monday 25 September 2000. It has been three years since Gilliam finished shooting his last film Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and the extended time between shoots reflects the amount of frustrating time Gilliam spent raising funds to start this new project.

Speaking to Dreams this summer, Gilliam said that the script for Quixote, written by himself with Tony Grisoni, follows the story of advertising executive Toby Grosini, "It's about an American advertising executive working for a British company in London and making commercials.   One of the commercials he’s making is using the characters Quixote and Sancho.  They’re making it in Spain and he somehow stumbles into part of Spain, he gets his tender little brain a bit confused and somehow he finds himself in the seventeenth century.   And it goes back and forth between the two worlds.”  …like Gilliam’s films Brazil and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, there are many autobiographical elements in the film.

An eclectic cast of talented actors has been assembled.  Joining the shoot are Johnny Depp as Toby Grosini, Jean Rochefort as Don Quixote, Vanessa Paradis, Rossy de Palma, Peter Vaughan, Bill Peterson, Miranda Richardson, and Christopher Eccleston. Of the cast both Johnny Depp and Peter Vaughan have worked with Gilliam before. Depp impressed him during the making of Fear and Loathing, and Vaughan starred in both Time Bandits (as Mr Ogre) and Brazil (as Mr Helpmann).

The talent behind the scenes includes the following crew: Nicola Pecorini is Director of Photography,  Phil Paterson is First Assistant Director, and the Spanish producer is José Luis Escolar, who worked on Munchausen.  Gabriella Pescucci is costume designer, Benjamín Fernández is production designer, and Christine Blundell is make-up designer.

Unconfirmed reports have mentioned that there was some shooting activity in London lasting a few days earlier in September. Apparently this was to film several studio-based adverts that feature within the film.  Shooting in Spain is to be complete by Christmas, and with post-production and marketing activity to complete, we should expect the film to be in the cinemas towards the end of 2001.

Other Dreams pages contain the Quixote preproduction interview and further Quixote background

2. Gilliam confirms Good Omens is to follow Quixote
At the end of August, IGN Filmforce spoke to Gilliam - he declared that a deal has been signed for him to develop a script for Good Omens, which he is scheduled now to direct after Quixote is finished. "A British company, Renaissance Films, are handing over some money to us to write it and hopefully make it after this one," Gilliam told FilmForce's Kenneth Plume on 25 August.  For more information, click on the FilmForce website.

The back of the book Good Omens, written by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, describes the plot thus: "According to the Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter - the world's only totally reliable guide to the future - the world will end on a Saturday. Next Saturday, in fact. Just after tea..."

In December 1999, it had been announced that Gilliam was to adapt Good Omens with Grisoni, however by the end of January 2000, Gilliam and Grisoni had stopped working on the script in the absence of a deal had decided not to proceed at this stage on script development.

Gilliam at Sitges, Spain
October 2000

3. Gilliam honoured at Sitges Film Festival
In early October 2000, at the end of the second week of the Quixote shoot, Terry Gilliam attended the Sitges Film Festival where he received the Time Machine award for his contribution to fantasy film. Sitges is a delightful coastal resort on the east coast of Spain, south of Barcelona.

Talking about Quixote, Gilliam said at the festival, “The ability to dream, a refusal to accept imposed limits and the typically Spanish capacity to suffer are the elements that most interest me about Don Quixote and which lead me to think that in some way all my life I've been a part of him.”

And talking about Johnny Depp, he said, “He is fast, intelligent, fun and when there is a problem, his contribution to finding a solution is tremendous."

At the festival, Gilliam spoke about Good Omens and Watchmen. Regarding Good Omens he confirmed the reports above, and on the subject of Watchmen, he said he was contacted about making the movie quite recently, but said that he would only make it as a 12 hour epic…

4. Charles Alverson reports from revolution in Belgrade
Charles Alverson, collaborator with Terry Gilliam on the Jabberwocky script and the First Draft of Brazil, was in Belgrade on the day the Serbian people grabbed the reins of power away from Slobodan Milosevic.  He sent his eye-witness account through to Dreams, which you can read at ChasOnline.

5. PocketEssentials Competition Results
Earlier in the year, Dreams ran a competition with five copies of John Ashbrook's book PocketEssential Terry Gilliam up for grabs.  The books were donated by the Pocket Essentials publishing group.  The task given to readers was to write a movie pitch that Terry Gilliam would be most unlikely to direct.  The winner was Max Evry for the following:

McDonald's Presents: Ronald's Adventures In North Korea
Ronald McDonald, cheerful owner of a fast-food restaurant, delights in singing songs to all children patrons, as expressed in opening number "Every Meal Is A Happy Meal." Forced to leave his community of food, folks and fun when a starving Korean boy writes him a letter asking for relief from devastating famine that swept his country, Ronald summons the magical french fry rainbow, and flies to North Korea where he transforms ailing rice patties into chicken nugget trees. Ends with song "There's a Quarter-Pound of Love On The Left Side Of Your Chest".

Copies of the book are also to be sent to the four runners-up: Rock 'n' Roll Elves (Mike Mayer), Strike Two (Edward and Heather Havers), Mr Money (Britt Wisenbaker) and The Diana Story  (Mr Beefy)

Many thanks to all those who took part.

6. Join the Dreams MessageBoard...
Just a few months old, but already over 300 messages have been posted.  Why not start or join in a discussion at the Dreams MessageBoard?  You may wish to respond to a post or tell the world your views.  Also, latest news is posted there.

Dreams welcomes contributions. If you wish to send letters, analysis, news or any information regarding Terry Gilliam and his work, then please email me. Thankyou to everyone who has emailed - keep in touch. Tell me what you think of Dreams, good or bad. Send your comments to me at phil@dreams.u-net.com

Dreams is one of the smart.co.uk family of websites

Phil Stubbs, Edinburgh. October 2000.

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