As a writer, when you have Christopher Walken saying the words you wrote, and he has such an interesting cadence in the way he delivers his lines, are you constantly surprised? Are you like, “I had a period there”?

It’s the periods and the commas that you forget about. But, conversely, he memorizes the script word for word like 6 months before hand. And the words never change, the intonations change, and you can never imagine that a line or a word even could be pounced in that way, but it’s still the words you wrote. So there’s a joy and a surprise to all that kind of stuff. And now after this and after the play I can’t imagine any other way to say those lines. He’s really the only one in the world that can do that I think.

Does he do something like that intentionally or is that just how he pronounces it?

I think you’d have to ask him. I don’t think so though. I think he knows how screwed up that stuff is. How can he not? If it was an accidental thing, I think it would be different on each take and it’s not. It’s always deliberately wrong on each take. But I’ve learned the trick. The next time I want him to ask a question, I won’t but a question mark there, because he’s going to do the opposite of everything. And if I don’t want it to be a question, I’ll put a question mark there.

Because you wrote this way back before you did In Bruges, did you experiences on In Bruges affect the script at all?

Not so much in that way really. If they did it was just about tightening scenes up and feeling like you didn’t have to go on ad infinitum. I think the editing process of a film is quite shocking as to how much you can easily get rid of that you never thought you could on the page. Conversely, when we started shooting I had trimmed it down, hadn’t changed much at all, but I trimmed it down and I thought “Well, there’s not a scene that we can lose from the script.” So we shot every scene. But, again, in the editing loads and loads were cut. There’s probably like 25 minutes of material cut from the first cut of this which will probably end up in the DVD extras. But like when they go to the desert there’s like 20 minutes of real fun scenes, but it just slowed everything down. It really was like the film was put on pause and they were just chatting in the desert. And you can do that for a little bit, and we do that for a little bit, but you’ve got to get Woody back if you’ve set him up so strongly. So no, in script terms it didn’t change much after Bruges. But I guess I did learn how to work with actors from Bruges, which is ideal for this.

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