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November 2005
Derailed: Press Conference Interview with Jennifer Aniston, Clive Owen, Vincent Cassel and Producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura

Derailed: Press Conference Interview with Jennifer Aniston, Clive Owen, Vincent Cassel and Producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura

By Wilson Morales

With all the hoopla surrounding celebrities and their personal lives, it's nice to know that we appreciate them for their day jobs, which is acting. Coming out on November 11th is a psychological thrilled called "Derailed", starring Clive Owen, Jennifer Aniston, Vincent Cassel, Melissa George, The Rza, Xzibit, and Giancarlo Esposito. Based upon the best-selling novel by James Seigel and directed by Swedish filmmaker Mikael Håfström., the movie revolves around a character named Charles Schine (Owen) and another, Lucinda Harris (Aniston) who fatefully meet and begin falling for each other despite their marriages. The two begin spending more and more time together until a tryst at a local motel turns into a nightmare. At a recent press conference in New York to promote the film, Clive Owen, Jennifer Aniston, Vincent Cassel and Producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura spoke about the film and working with each other.

In many ways your life has been derailed with your personal life unraveling in the public eye. How do you keep everything on track?

JENNIFER ANISTON: I'm not the role model or the poster child for how to do anything. It was my first time at this particular picnic. I have a family of great support and great friends. This is nothing out of the ordinary. People walk through this stuff all the time. It's good to have a creative outlet (like this film to escape everything). I loved having work to go to and when I wasn't working I was fine too.

Will this role finally debunk the label of America's Sweetheart for you?

JA: God I hope so! The America Sweetheart label gets put on a lot of people. I don't pay too much attention to that. I'm not trying to shake anything. I'm just following my instincts and doing work that is coming to me and I'm grateful for it. (This role) was such unchartered territory and I felt such a trust in everything the director (Mikael Hafstrom) said. There was definitely a moment of ŒOoh gosh I hope I can pull this off.' I had enough people around me and Mikael believing in it. It was interesting to him to take this (Rachel from Friends) persona, or whatever the persona is that didn't grant me the opportunity to do these types of roles and putting (me) into this part. That doesn't always happen and so I really appreciated that.

What were your first impressions of each other?

JA: He's great. It was instant ease and comfort with Clive and that doesn't always happen. It was very easy to work together. We had similar sensibilities about how to approach what we were doing; one didn't have a different method.

CLIVE OWEN: I was thrilled when Mikael (Hafstrom) the director told me he cast Jennifer for the part because I'm always a huge fan of the ones who make it look incredibly easy. I think Jennifer is as good as it gets and it's not easy and she makes it look easy because she's so brilliant.

What did you do while you were shooting in Chicago and were you recognized there?

JA: Let me tell you every specific place I like to hang out so you can all come there! I just loved it. I loved filming there. The people are so kind and respectful and leave you alone and let you do your job. It has a lot of wonderful culture and great museums and great restaurants. The lake is beautiful and there's a lot to do. The oddest place I was recognized would probably be the steam room (in the hotel). How did you handle the rape scene?

JA: It was over a week that we filmed it so we were able to block it out and it was so choreographed and so technical. It was so well thought out and there were stunt men around. It was very controlled. It was not as hard to do as it was to watch. In terms of the physicality I talked to (co-star Clive Owen) to a point, but then Vincent (Cassel, the rapist) comes in and you're just pretty terrified so it wasn't that hard. With Vincent I was in such good hands because he's a pro and he's in such control of his body which is something that is very important not to be reckless as an actor especially in a scene like that. I felt so safe. We'd say Œrolling,' and then Œcut' and you're out of it because it's very quick and very jarring. I wasn't playing a rape.

LORENZO DI BONAVENTURA: When Jennifer first approached the scene the truth of the scene was really important because rape is a serious matter. The tougher aspects of that scene were something that Jennifer really pushed because she didn't want it to feel in any way gratuitous or fake because it's a horrible thing that happens.

JA: That's true.

VINCENT CASSEL: All together the scene is not that graphic. You don't see as much as other movies with rape scenes. You have to be concentrated and you don't want to hurt anybody of course but I think it's much more difficult for Jennifer or for an actress than for an actor.

Could you understand your innocent character's attraction to Vincent's thug?

JENNIFER: She was stuck in a bad situation and felt she saw a window or a way out (with Clive's character Charles) but you know how some destructive relationships can sort of keep you trapped.

This is the first film that the Weinstein Company is releasing in America.

LDB: The Weinstein Company have done a really great job and they always thought this movie existed in a semi-independent world. I think some of the aspects of the film are very different than what a studio would allow you to do. There is an unflinching nakedness to the character's reaction (to the rape) and there is a truth to the violence as opposed to the impact of the violence. The great thing is Harvey (Weinstein) has been completely supportive of allowing us to take it to a place where you could say it's uncommercial. The truth is when it was conceived there was a lot of hammering and every studio passed on this book except for the Weinsteins because of the rape sequence, and because of the darker aspects to the film.

Clive, how disappointed were you that you didn't get cast as Bond?

CO: I wasn't disappointed at all. There was a lot of media speculation. There was never an official offer. I put myself out of the frame by taking a number of movies that were going into next year that are all very different, with very exciting people and I'm having the time of my career.

Weren't you even slightly disappointed?

CLIVE: Nyet! (Œno' in Russian)

DERAILED opens on November 11th


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