How ‘Ruby Sparks’ Came to Life
August 7, 2012
The new film 'Ruby Sparks' marks the return to the screen of the
directing couple Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, the husband and
wife tandem behind the Academy Award winning, 'Little Miss
Sunshine'. It's also the first film from a new couple on the
independent film scene, Zoe Kazan and Paul Dano.
'Ruby Sparks' represents a true collaborative effort on the part of writer, directors, and actors. Where one couple worked diligently to get the script in performing shape, another worked tirelessly to get it financed and produced. As one couple acted out the scenes in advance to get the blocking, dialogue and pacing right, the other couple carefully crafted the writing to make the words on the page effortlessly translate to the screen.
Faris states, "What was great was that John and I have worked together for a long time and Paul and Zoe have been together for almost 5 years. We all have a really good rapport so the lines of communication were really good. You can't hope to have more committed actors: she wrote it and he was with her through every stage of writing it. So they were so invested in their part in the film so that was a real luxury."
As the idea gelled into a story which grew into the script, Kazan and Dano set about the task of getting the film made. Dano took an Executive Producer credit on 'Ruby Sparks', and utilized his experience in Hollywood to make this story advance from page to screen. Dayton and Faris took the script and fleshed out the details in a way unique to this couple.
"We took advantage that there's two of us and explored the scenes together privately, in order to have a sense of what we're going to be asking of our actors," stated Faris. "What are the feelings in the scene? Where are the conflict and the tension? The more you know going in, the better. So we try to put ourselves thru the paces as much as we can, that way on the set we really know what we're chasing after."
See 'Ruby Sparks' at select CinéArts theatres. Let us know if you've seen the film and give us your opinion.