The red carpet wrap-up on the high-profile movies coming out of AFI Dallas this year.
With 11 days and over 250 films, our eyeballs hurt after all the good movies we got a chance to screen at this year's AFI Dallas International Film Festival. So which ones stood out?
Read on for more from the stars and filmmakers of some of reelz.com's festival picks.
Star: Sam Rockwell
On his role: "I thought [Glenn] was a very sad guy, you know? A very sad guy who had a few chemicals loose. Some things went wrong in his childhood, probably. Just very misguided. He took a few wrong turns and he ended up in a bad place. It could happen to anybody when you think about it. I think he is chemically imbalanced, so maybe not anybody."
On the depiction of domestic violence: " When you read it in the paper, you think, what would take me to that.. I think that's what interested [director David Gordon Green] and I, is what would take it to that next level? What would it take to push you to that next level? What if you took a semi-normal person -- I don't think Glenn is a normal person -- but what if we treated him as if he was? How does he get there? I think that's what David and I were experimenting with."
THE LIFE BEFORE HER EYES
Star: Eva Amurri
On choosing her roles: "I think that when actors get bad, or when I notice actors getting bad, is when they get bored. They're doing the same thing and they get lazy. So that's what I want to do, I want to make sure I'm never bored, I'm always trying new things. I like to do things that scare me, that are out of my comfort zone, that I've been doing more of recently."
On her character's relationship with co-star Evan Rachel Wood's character: "Their relationship is kind of walking the line between the fun and the glee of having a best friend and then the more morose issue of working things out and fighting. That whole thing of Maureen's guilt at her happiness and ability to see to the future, having excitement about the future, and then Diana's lack of ability to do that because of her issues. They're friends for a reason. They're kind of sad girls. They're not really understood."
Director: Kelly Whalen
On the movie: "Tulia, Texas is a documentary about a miscarriage of justice in this small panhandle town. In 1999 there was an undercover agent that moved into town and made cases against 46 people who lived in this community for drug dealing, and 39 of them were black. Years later after many people received the maximum punishment in prison, this evidence started to surface, troubling evidence about [him]. So our film kind of weaves together the stories of the last remaining defendants in prison and the attorneys and the activists fighting for their freedom, but also the stories of the undercover agent and his supervisor, the local sheriff. It's kind of a cross between a portrait of a small town and a legal thriller. You really get to discover the case as it unravels."
On shooting in small-town Texas: "We were definitely curiosities to some of the townsfolk. On some of our first trips, we stopped in at the local cattle auction, which is kind of the biggest institution in Tulia. It's cow country around there. People would come up to us and suss us out. A few people asked us if we were PETA activists, they thought we were animal rights activists."
Star: Stephen Rea
On playing a man stuck in a car windshield: "Well, it works because it's not intellectual. It's about what you're seeing. It's about somebody with a thing shoved up their stomach. It's not that you can sit back and intellectualize or something. It's like, for f--k's sake!"
On the audience reaction: "It's so great when they get involved like that. The one that kills me is that after all this blood and everything, then you cut to the nursing home where she's paring the toenails of that woman and -- Oooh! It's kind of like everybody can imagine what the wounds in the car are like but everybody knows what it's like to cut your toe."
On it being inspired by a true story: "When I think about it being based on a real story is I don't think you could make it up. I don't think it would occur to you to write a story about a guy going through the windshield of a car and a woman driving -- you wouldn't make that up."
BATTLE IN SEATTLE
Director: Stuart Townsend
On why he made the movie: "It was about so many more things than just the [World Trade Organization]. Primarily it was an event that had been forgotten about. I remembered the event myself, I watched it at the time and all I saw was riots, maybe a couple of anarchists smashing a few things. That's all I got from it and I think that's what that most people got from it. A couple of years later I'm reading a book on globalization, reading an article about it, saw some pictures that really just grabbed me. When I started to research the event on the Internet, I was blown away by what actually happened and all the stuff that I had never known about."
"It was also, personally, I'm an Irishman. I arrived in America September 8, 2001, so my entire experience has been post-9/11 living in America. I hear a lot about freedom and democracy, freedom and democracy. This was a film that to me was about people that really did sure their First Amendment rights, stood up and spoke truth to power. And as soon as they were successful, they got crushed. That to me was a really interesting example of the meaning and the limits of democracy in America."
Star: Charlize Theron
On her character: "Ella, I think in many ways, will represent the audience that don't know that much about the WTO. She's just there by the unfortunate event that she lives in Seattle and it all takes place there. I think Stuart was really smart to create a character like that. I wanted to play her instantly because I felt the emotional connection, that what happened to a lot of people in those five days really came through with her. I was excited to play that. I always love playing the fish out of water. There's always something interesting for me with that. Because I think as an actor you never really, truly know where it's going to take you until you really show up. And if you're fortunate enough to work with directors that can kind of create the right environment for you, for me as an actor it always makes the best kind of work."
WHAT JUST HAPPENED?
Director: Barry Levinson
On the movie: "This isn't an absurdist piece. Even though it's very funny and crazy at times, it's very much what the business is about. But we're not trying to satirize it. You can't satirize Hollywood. Because Hollywood is already a satire, you can't go any further."
On why you should see a movie about Hollywood even if you aren't in the biz: "Why do we watch movies about doctors? Or television shows about doctors? Most of the country are not doctors. We get involved in other worlds other than our own because that's what's sort of exciting."
On working with star Robert De Niro: "He's terrific. He's just absolutely spectacular. Every take is something interesting. It becomes not one of trying to get the material to work in terms of him, it's simply the choices you can make. He's that spontaneous."