THE SIMON WEST INTERVIEW
Copyright 2000 www.tombraiderchronicles.com

[ October 28th 2000 ]

Were you a fan of the game before you came on board the production? I don't have much time to play video games, but TOMB RAIDER is definitely the best one I've played. I find that it's both intelligent, creative and incredibly fun.

What has been the biggest revelation about working with Angelina Jolie? I think the biggest revelation is when one considers how talented an actress Angelina is in all areas of her craft. She trained very hard for this role and she physically embodies the character so well, sometimes you forget that she's not Lara Croft. Even her accent and her mannerisms as Lara are perfect. I've never seen anything like it.

Will the character maintain her British sensibility? Yes. In fact, that's what attracted me to the film. I don't' want to portray England in a cliché'd manner. I am focusing on Lara's character and her whole world as very fresh, stylish and cool. The film uses the historic and polished character of England combined with cutting-edge, innovative technology.

How realistic will the film be? We are shooting in various exotic locations so the film is going to feel realistic. However, the movie also relies on the fantasy-element. The audience will see a realistic world mixed with fantastic possibilities.

How were the locations in the film decided? In considering locations, I wanted TOMB RAIDER to be different. Audiences are so used to seeing Egypt and Greece in this genre. I wanted to be more adventurous so I chose Iceland and Cambodia. These countries provide environments rarely seen in action films.

What do you think will surprise people the most after they have seen the film? It's hard to say because there are so many elements that will surprise the audience. I think that the film's scale, the complexity of the plot, and how involving the characters are will all be surprising to people.

Are there any previous films or genre materials that have influenced your work on this film? The classic quest movies and big epics have always been inspirational to me. I would say in particular, "Dr. Zhivago," "Lawrence of Arabia," and "The Conformist."

What is the most challenging aspect of the action sequences for you? Coming up with new and interesting ways of surprising the audience with different styles of action they haven't seen before. This is hard on both a creative and technical level.

Knowing how important music is to you, do you know who the composer of the film will be? Will "Lara's Theme" from the game be incorporated into the theme? I plan on relying upon many music-sources, not just having a single composer for the film. I will also be creating entirely new music and not borrowing from the game.

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