In Hollywood, friendships are what make this town worth it. There are ups and downs, but friends make everything worthwhile. When you're prepping to make a movie or in post, they're the people you assemble to write notes and they're the ones you invite to the premiere as well.
We've talked about how Zhao used images from his movies to pitch Eternals, but in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Zhao talked about how Villeneuve screened an early cut of Dune in IMAX.
This was not just so that she could learn how to tailor her tentpole for the large format presentation and get it ready for screens all over the world.
Zhao said, “I gotta say that I’m a big fan of Denis; he’s a friend. [Eternals and Dune] got pushed and shifted because of the pandemic. We got pulled apart and then now we’re back together again at the same time. Even when I was working on IMAX for Eternals, I asked him if it was okay for me to watch Dune. I knew he did incredible things in IMAX, so I knew I could learn from him. He was so generous; he was like, ‘Yes.’ He also gave me other references to look at.”
It's interesting to see how both movies got the short end of the stick during the pandemic.
But now each is crucial in their roles to bring the box office back to form as the pandemic hopefully ends soon. Each movie is carrying the weight, and thanks to their collaboration and friendship, they came at the perfect time. Zhao continued to talk about how this friendship has bolstered the box office.
“So I actually find a lot of strength in our films coming out at the same time and to have a colleague who I respect and love and to be able to go through this together and to hug each other at Venice [International Film Festival] when Dune came out. He even sent me a message last night, so it all feels very empowering.”
Have you seen these movies in IMAX? Did you see influences from one to the other? Let us know in the comments.