Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Tweek City Press Kit: Casting Giuseppe

The one person I had in place before I left L.A. was Patrick Baca, my casting director. Once I had a schedule, Patrick and I began casting the principal actors – out of Los Angeles. Every week, I would drive to LA and back, simultaneously casting with Patrick and producing with Caitlin. We auditioned over a hundred people for the roll of Bill before landing on Giuseppe.

Whereas many actors resorted to various drug addict clichés (chewing on fingers, talking really fast), Giuseppe came from another direction entirely. His take reminded me of a speed addict who’s been doing it so long their body has more-or-less adapted, while there mind has continued to race forward. Physically, he didn’t look anything like I had envisioned but, throughout the process, we kept coming back to him. During the final call backs, Giuseppe’s performance stood out as the most connected and idiosyncratic of the bunch. On some elemental level Giuseppe was perfect.

Upon casting Giuseppe, he and I immediately connected around the films of Werner Herzog. Werner Herzog is one of my primary influences and my favorite film of all time is probably Strozek. Giuseppe mentioned that his favorite actor is the man who played Strozek, Bruno S. Bruno S. only performed in two feature films that I know of, but those two performances are among the most deeply felt in cinema history. Bruno S. was incapable of a conventional performance -- he just existed in front of the camera. After my conversations with Giuseppe, I knew the character of Bill was in good hands.


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