In the realm of cinema, where meticulously scripted scenes and rehearsed dialogues usually reign supreme, director Dominic Savage decided to take a daring leap into the world of improvisation. The result? “Close to You,” a film that not only premiered at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival but also left audiences in awe of its authenticity. Starring the talented Elliot Page and Hillary Baack, this project not only brings a deeply personal story to the screen but also showcases the incredible artistry of improvisation.
Breaking the Mold
At this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, Dominic Savage unveiled his latest creation, “Close to You.” What sets this film apart from the rest is its bold decision to embrace full improvisation. While many films rely heavily on carefully crafted scripts, Savage decided to let the story unfold organically, trusting his actors to bring their characters to life in the moment.
The Trusting Triad: Page, Baack, and Savage
To shed light on this remarkable cinematic experiment, Page and Baack recently sat down for an interview with FilmSweep’s Perri Nemiroff. They candidly discussed their experiences working on a project that required them to think on their feet, emphasizing the invaluable trust and connection they developed with director Dominic Savage.
For Hillary Baack, the journey into improvisation was initially nerve-wracking. Yet, her deep connection with Savage helped ease those initial jitters. She spoke of the freedom she felt as an actor, a freedom that allowed her to explore her character with authenticity. Baack recalled, “There’s so much freedom as an actor, and I had a couple of gems with Dominic, and we also really hit it off. I felt like I could trust him so much, which is so important with this process.” As she further connected with Savage in person, that trust blossomed, and her nervousness dissolved. She embraced the experience, finding immense joy in being a part of this unique project.
Elliot Page echoed Baack’s sentiments, praising Dominic Savage’s directorial approach. Page believes that Savage is a director who leads with his heart, instinct, and a genuine desire to capture honesty on screen. It’s this approach, Page suggests, that fosters an extraordinary atmosphere on set, one unlike any other he’s encountered. He emphasized that Savage’s ability to guide the cast and crew through the improvisational process is a reflection of his character and intentions as a filmmaker.
Unveiling “Close to You”
So, what’s at the heart of “Close to You”? The film revolves around Page’s character, Sam, who hasn’t seen his family since undergoing a significant transition. But life has a way of forcing reunions, and Sam’s return to his hometown of Cobourg for his father’s birthday celebration sets the stage for a profound and emotionally charged story. Despite the occasion, Sam must navigate a family that doesn’t fully understand him while also confronting memories from the past when he reconnects with a high school friend, portrayed by Hillary Baack.
In “Close to You,” the power of improvisation isn’t just evident in the behind-the-scenes process; it’s woven into the very fabric of the story itself. The film captures the raw and unscripted moments that mirror life’s unpredictability, making it a truly unique and captivating cinematic experience.
“Close to You” is a testament to the artistry of improvisation, the trust between actors and director, and the power of storytelling that speaks to the heart. As Elliot Page and Hillary Baack have shown, taking risks and embracing the unknown can lead to cinematic magic that resonates with audiences worldwide.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Improvisation
What is “Close to You” about?
“Close to You” follows the story of Sam, played by Elliot Page, who returns to his hometown after a significant transition. He must navigate his family’s ignorance and confront past memories, all set against the backdrop of his father’s birthday celebration.
Why is “Close to You” unique?
“Close to You” stands out because it’s a fully improvised film. Unlike traditional movies with scripted dialogues, director Dominic Savage allowed the story to unfold organically, creating a raw and authentic cinematic experience.
How did the actors, Elliot Page and Hillary Baack, approach improvisation?
Both Page and Baack praised their strong rapport with director Dominic Savage, emphasizing the trust and connection that allowed them to excel in the improvisational process. They credit Savage’s leadership style, which focuses on heart and authenticity, for making the experience special.
What was the significance of the Toronto International Film Festival premiere?
The Toronto International Film Festival is a prestigious platform for premiering films. “Close to You” being showcased there indicates its recognition as a unique and noteworthy cinematic work that explores the art of improvisation.
What can audiences expect from “Close to You”?
Audiences can anticipate an emotionally charged and authentic storytelling experience that captures life’s unpredictability. The film’s unscripted moments mirror real-life, making it a compelling and heartfelt cinematic journey.