Wednesday, December 9, 2009

choreographing Kate Hudson in 'Nine'

For "Lights, Camera . . . " we ask a craftsperson to talk about a specific scene in his or her latest film. This week, John DeLuca, producer and choreographer of "Nine," talks about creating the kicky go-go dance for Kate Hudson.

Enter Guido Contini ( Daniel Day-Lewis), world famous Italian filmmaker. Guido makes films that challenge him and his audience. Enter Stephanie (Kate Hudson), American fashion journalist and avid fan of Guido Contini's movies -- but for all the wrong reasons. She loves the style over the content. But his evocation of style and glamour in the seductive world he creates is a means to an end. He is hoping to delve beneath the facade when dealing with the characters and events in his films.

As a backdrop for Kate's "Cinema Italiano" musical sequence, director Rob Marshall and I wanted to convey the spirit and excitement of the exploding era of the '60s as models strut their stuff on the catwalk. The number starts with the rhythm of a drumbeat and escalates as Stephanie seduces Guido with her charm.

Reality and fantasy collide. The juxtaposition of these two worlds is the interesting and necessary spin for the number. The scene and the song intertwine, and what starts as a celebration ends up as a nightmare for Guido. He desperately needs to make a profound change in a deceitful life of lies and excess.
To conceive of an energetic '60s dance number for a true singer and dancer like Kate Hudson was pure joy. The discipline of dancers is sublime and we saw that Kate had it in her blood. We were hard on her, but she knew we wanted her to be the best she could be. She worked and worked and worked and never gave in to the strict demands of the number.

It was exhilarating imagining the driving beat and infectious energy of the '60s choreography for "Cinema Italiano" to help illustrate a dramatic turning point in Guido's life. The number found its way into the framework of the film only when the concept of the fantasy nightmare paid off in reality. Guido is slowly losing control of his fantasies. They, in turn, enlighten his predicament and begin to spotlight the dichotomy of Guido's psyche that leaves him trapped. He will have two choices -- self destruction or a requisite change.

source: The Enveloppe

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