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Interviews review

Manetti Brothers interview - The Arrival Of Wang

added: 4 Feb 2013 // release date: 4 Feb 2013
certificate: // director:
studio: St Martin's Lane Hotel // film length
reviewer: Claudia A

Manetti-Brothers-interview---The-Arrival-Of-Wang Printable version
The very hip Manetti Brothers, since last year’s Film4 FrightFest more in demand than ever before, are responsible for surprise hit The Arrival Of Wang. The unusual and low-budget SciFi landed on planet Earth late last autumn, albeit not via spaceship but in DVD format.

Film-News Claudia A. caught up with directors Marco and Antonio Manetti for some tie-in questions:

Film-News:
Hi Marco and Tony, welcome to London. I really enjoyed your movie, so I have a few questions for you. Here’s the first one.
What prompted you to make a psychological SciFi drama?

Manetti Brothers:
True, we see it possibly as a psychological movie but we also wanted to have some action in this, you know, a film where everything comes together. But the inspiration for ‘Wang’ actually comes mostly from spy thrillers, as opposed to SciFi flicks.

Film-News:
The aliens are always the baddies…

Manetti Brothers:
We think its because purely from a psychological level, the aliens in movies represent the danger we don’t know. As people are always scared of the unknown. Let me give you an example: if I had to choose between being locked into a cage with a lion, or being locked into a cage with an alien, then I would choose the lion… Every monster in movies stands for something psychological. The vampire represents our fear of lust, the werewolf represents our fear of wild animals, a zombie represents our fear of becoming part of a manipulated and controlled crowd, and so on. Of course, with aliens there’s also the political aspect, especially in 50’s American movies the aliens were a metaphor for the threat of Communism… Which is why in our film we play with these elements and turn them first to confuse the viewer.

Film-News:
There’s an ET moment in your movie… did you do that on purpose to mislead the viewers?

Manetti Brothers:
That’s well observed. We did it on purpose to trick the audience into thinking the alien is the victim here, haha.

Film-News:
Why have you opted for Chinese as the ‘extraterrestrial’ language in the film?

Manetti Brothers:
When we put ourselves into the mind of Wang, he would have asked himself “I’m now coming to visit planet Earth, so which language should I use to communicate?” So of course, he would opt for the most popular and most widely spoken language on planet Earth. You might think that’s English, a lot of people do. But actually we discovered that Mandarin-Chinese is the most popular language!

Film-News:
How did you decide on the look of Wang?

Manetti Brothers:
We had the Special Effects-crew (who was almost working for free!), who we wanted to express themselve. So we showed them the script and said a few things about the character of Wang, for example his body has to look rubbery and the arms almost resemble those of an octopus. So we said to the director of the Special Effects team: “Ok, these are the few rules you need to stick to, the rest is up to you and the team, design Wang as you want.” And of course, it was a Chinese actor who spoke Wang’s dialogue. When we shot the scenes with Wang, the actor (Li Yong) who voiced Wang was actually sitting there.

Film-News:
Tell me about the casting…

Manetti Brothers:
Ennio Fantastichini, who played the investigating Inspector Curti, is a fantastic actor; he’s one of the greatest actors in Italy. We were quite afraid that he might say ‘no’ to us offering him the part, but luckily he said ‘yes’ after having read the script. He is a fan of SciFi and he really liked the script. For us that was great of course, as he’s such a name in Italy. As for Francesca Cuttica, who plays the interpreter Gaia, we were again lucky to got such a great actress, because of course for this film, getting the right actors was the most important thing. In fact, we met her before during a casting meeting for a different project, for which she was not required in the end. But when we began the casting for Wang, we remembered her and how much she impressed us back then, so we called her up. We met, and decided that she was perfect for the role of the interpreter, so we didn’t even try somebody else. It was funny because when we did the casting for our movie Paura, we saw a lot of actors for the casting… but for Arrival Of Wang, it happened real fast. The first actors we saw (which were also the ones we wanted), we got! And the black woman in one of the scenes, that’s my wife, haha.

Film-News:
The movie has already been shown at American film festivals to great success, but what about China…?

Manetti Brothers:
Haha, you know we contacted a film festival over there and submitted our film, but we never heard a word back…









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