Hereafter: Interview with Eastwood

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Clint Eastwood is the director of "Hereafter," starring Matt Damon. The film, which surrounds three characters and their connections with the deceased, is being released by Warner Bros on October 22.

"The way it was laid out, it seemed to be something I had never seen before, and had such great dilemmas and dimensions," says Eastwood. "I liked the way Peter wrote three stories that stand alone but at the same time are connected."

 

On Matt Damon's character George

 

Though George is genuinely gifted, he is aware that the field of psychics and mediums is rife with phonies and the pseudo-scientific. "We try to show the legitimacy of what he does," Eastwood notes, "as opposed to the charlatans out there. Whether there are some who are legitimate and others who are not is in the eye of the beholder, so to speak, but the story does touch on the existence of people that take advantage of those who want to make contact with what might be out there."

 

Shooting close to home

 

They found George's apartment on historic Nob Hill in an apartment within sight of the Transamerica building. "I'm from the Bay Area, so I know the neighborhood, and the apartment we chose is very typical of a lot of apartments in that area," Eastwood says. "The building is not constructed in absolute squares. The entrances have angles to them, so when you go in with the cameras, you can cover things from interesting sides rather than just four walls. But it's a great old neighborhood with an Italian restaurant underneath, so we thought it was perfect for George."

 

Filming a tsunami

 

"I have never been in a tsunami, though my son was in Thailand when the big 2004 tsunami happened, and I talked to a lot of people who were there," says Eastwood. "A lot of people photographed it, and you could see that it was devastating."

 

"It's really quite something," says Eastwood. "To depict that, to recreate that, is very, very difficult, and water is particularly difficult to do, but we had to do it that way. You also had to have some computer generated material in order to really tell the story we're trying to tell, and Michael did a great job of making that wave real."

 

On Directing

 

"When you approach a scene in a movie, your intuition is to do it a certain way," Eastwood offers. "I like to embrace the stories and let them unfold naturally by getting to know the people.

 

"In this film, each of the three main characters has something the other one needs, not necessarily answers, but a starting point to get on with their lives. They've all just got to do the best they can while they're here."