If they made a movie about your pandemic life, what would it be called?

Did you see

Two hot fair

, starring Laura Dern and Hugh Jackman? It sounds like a movie or maybe a Broadway play. But it’s really just the stars’ answer to the question: if they made a film about their life during the pandemic, what would that film be called?

Dern and Jackman were at the Toronto International Film Festival to promote

The son

, in which they play the divorced parents of a teenager (Zen McGrath) with mental health problems. Naturally, after a two-to-one interview (two celebrities, one journalist), I asked her how to develop chemistry, work with a young actor and create a film with a message.

But when I got the ripple from a local publicist that my time was almost up, I asked them the question I’d put in every interview on TIFF this year.

Dern was the first to report: ”

A hot mess

.” Jackson chimed in as if ordering a sandwich: ”

Two hot fair

. I don’t think anyone would want to sit through more than 30 minutes of this film, so let’s put them together.”

The answers were often split pessimistic/optimistic. Baran do Odar and Jantje Friese, a married couple and the creators of a new Netflix series called

1899

, were in the first camp. ”

This sucks, part two

‘ he said without a pause. She replied: “I wanted to say

home education

.”

Edward Berger, writer/director of a new adaptation of

nothing new in the West

He said his pandemic life would be called

lonliness

. “I was shooting this film…in Prague, isolated because I was afraid I’d stop filming if I got it, so I lived apart from everyone else, including my family, for six months. Prague had one of the highest infection rates in the world at the time. The borders were closed and I didn’t go home.”

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Brett Morgen, Director of

Moontime Daydream

, about musician David Bowie, chose the name of this film. “Because for two years I was alone in my office with David Bowie, or rather with the images and sounds of David Bowie. And because of my heart condition, before I got a vaccine, I thought I was the ultimate risk. So I cleaned out my building and I had no support staff, no interns, nothing. I was alone in a building during the height of the pandemic, making a film about an artist whose tool of the trade is what we create in times of isolation and alienation. And that had a tremendous impact on the narrative.”

Not all were so isolated. Tobias Lindholm, the Danish director of

The good nurse

he called his pandemic experience

Happy family

. “I have a little cabin in the woods that I bought many years ago,” he said. “It’s nothing, but I love this place and the pandemic has allowed us to spend months up there.”

Canada’s Sarah Polley, Director of

women speak

had a similar title – maybe the English language remake?

Messy happy kids

. And Buffy Sainte-Marie, the singer/songwriter and subject of the documentary

Buffy Sainte-Marie: Go ahead

said her title would be

So glad I was home and not at some strange country hotel.

Unsurprisingly, many filmmakers have weathered much of the pandemic, and their responses have reflected that.

“It would probably just be called

animated

because I’ve been working on the film for so long,” said Frances O’Connor, her first feature film

Emily

(via Emily Bronte), had its world premiere at TIFF. “It kind of went by so quickly because so much of it was spent with Emily, so I felt pretty fortunate that I had the distraction.”

Krysty Wilson-Cairns, who wrote the screenplay for

The good nurse

She said the movie of her pandemic life would be called

Late Nights on Zoom

, “because I’ve worked with directors in LA and in Sydney. I was basically nocturnal.” But that gave her an even better idea. ”

Nocturnal animal

I would call it because I’ve gone pretty wild and haven’t had a haircut in two years.”

Sebastian Lelio, director of

The wonder

with Florence Pugh, had a title and an actual film to go with it. “I have a short film called

algorithm

, and it’s a homemade COVID musical for indoors. So that would be a good title.”

Chandler Levack replied: “I think it would say

My father’s futon

, because I basically lived there. And my dad helped me a lot — he probably has eight different credits because he’s an extra, he was a dog wrangler, he did behind-the-scenes photography, he was a location scout, he was sort of a therapist at some points. I feel like I owe my dad so much for his dedication and care.”

Levack was at TIFF with the world premiere of her feature film debut,

i like movies

. And that was also the my-pandemic film title that Anthony Shim, a director from Vancouver, gave his film

Riceboy is sleeping

won the $20,000 Platform Award at the festival.

“It’s pretty much all I did was make this film,” he explained. “And it was amazing that I got into it.”

The main actress in

Riceboy is sleeping

Choi Seung-yoon, who flew to Canada from South Korea to star in the film, detailed her pandemic years

The only tourist

. “I’ve earned a lot of airline miles,” she said, almost apologetically. “I could be outside as a stranger. There were no tourists in Canada.”

For weary actors at the end of a long day of interviews, the unexpected question might be difficult to handle. “I’m going to come up with a terrible title,” said Emma Mackey, the star of

Emily

. “I wish I was more creative and fun. I can’t feel my brain right now.” A hit. ”

I can’t feel my brain right now.

There you are!”

Ruben Ostlund, director of the socio-political satire

triangle of sadness

thought long and hard before she thought of it

Fifty-two million packages

. “Because I heard that DHL delivers 52 million packages in Germany every week. The pandemic has unleashed an online shopping craze and you can tell that capitalism is far from giving up; it just changed.”

Some filmmakers were succinct in their answers. ”

hardware

‘ said Charlotte Wells, the film’s Scottish director

After sun

, cheekily forbids any follow-up questions. “You have to read what you want into it.” And Darren Aronofsky, director of

The whale

replied simply: ”

Consideration

.”

Perhaps the most surprising answer came from Brendan Fraser, the star of Aronofsky’s film. His movie-about-my-pandemic title? ”

Zelda: Breath of the Wild

that I compulsively played on Nintendo DS.” How long was he there? “I don’t know how many hours, but I got the golden motorbike!”

Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2022

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