Zonca makes comeback with Julia and Tilda Swinton
by Fabien Lemercier
06/10/2006 - French helmer Erick Zonca is returning behind the camera with a new film entitled Julia. Zonca debuted in 1998 with the highly successful The Dreamlife of Angels , winner of the Best Actress Prize at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival, three Cesars (Best Actress, Best Film and Most Promising Actress) and the Discovery of the Year prize at the European Film Awards.
The director’s new, English-language film is thus eagerly awaited and will start shooting early November around Los Angeles. Heading the bill is London actress Tilda Swinton, who played the witch in The Chronicles of Narnia and is currently winding up filming of Phantasmagoria: The Visions of Lewis Carroll by Marilyn Manson (which is being sold by Wild Bunch).
Swinton, who won the Best Actress Volpi at the 1991 Venice Film Festival for Edward II, will play the leading role in Julia, which, contrary to rumours, is not at all based on John Cassavetes’ Gloria.
Co-scripted by Zonca and Aude Py, with the collaboration of Irish writer Michael Collins (whose novel The Resurrectionists attracted interest from Anthony Minghella), the original story follows the life of Julia, a 40 year-old seductress, who finds it increasingly difficult to hide her alcoholism and ends up out of her depth.
At an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting she encounters a young Mexican woman who can no longer see her son so Julia accepts to kidnap the eight year-old boy. Despite the sudden disappearance of the young woman, Julia succeeds in the kidnapping but gets caught up in an infernal spiral and frantically escapes to Mexico, with the child’s grandfather hot on their heels.
Produced by François Marquis for Les Productions Bagheera (The Dreamlife of Angels) and co-produced by Bertrand Faivre for the British outfit The Bureau, Julia has a 10-week shoot in the US (where Zonca lived as a child) and Mexico.
Mars Distribution will release the film in France in the second half of 2007. It has yet to be decided officially who will handle world sales.
(Translated from French)