Thanks to Izzie for the scan and translation of this article from Journal de Montréal 02/25! Please credit her if you re-post. And I’m not sure about that release date at the bottom.
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19th century incursion for Robert Pattinson
Twilight is over. In ‘Bel Ami’, Robert Pattinson transforms himself in an opportunist Parisian who seduces women to climb the social latter.
Bel Ami produced by Declan Donnellan and Nick Ormerod, is an adaptation of the novel by Guy de Maupassant. The story has been slightly modified for the big screen. We are in 1890, Georges Duroy (Robert Pattinson) is back from the war and his fighting journal, published in La Vie Francaise -where he got the job with the help of a friend- assures him of a steady day-to-day job.
“He’s like a reality tv superstar. He finds a way to earn a living without doing anything.” says Robert Pattinson about the anti-hero during Berlinale where the movie had its world premiere.
Georges Duroy -nicknamed Bel Ami- understood how to climb the social latter., by seducing women. From his friend’s wife, Madeleine Forestier (Uma Thurman) to Mme Rousset (Kristin Scott Thomas), along with Clotilde (Christina Ricci) and Suzanne (Holliday Grainger), they all fall for his charm.
“George is not a character you find in today’s movies simply because he has no remorse. Normally, these days, a movie has to deliver a message or a life lesson. Not in Bel Ami, George spends his time stabbing everyone in the back while being rewarded. It was really fun to play and I don’t think I will have the possibility of playing such a character again.” explains the year-old British actor.
“I think he’s incredibly sensitive but he’s so selfish. He has no empathy and doesn’t accept that anyone else but him can be successful. He thinks that people try either to use him or insult him constantly. He’s obsessed with himself.” continues Rob.
Political and social dimension
Since Bel Ami is set at the end of the 19th century in Paris -although the movie was film in England and Hungary- it does hold a political and social dimension that parallels today’s society as noted by Robert Pattinson.
“It’s funny because when George gets hired for the gossip section of the newspaper, it was very modern for something written in 1885. It’s the same thing today. You take the same models for the articles and just change the names. I found that ironic.”
He, of course, admitted that his success comes from playing Edward Cullen in The Twilight Saga but he doesn’t want his fans to compare his next roles to Edward. And it’s with that warning that he’s hoping his fans go see Bel Ami in theaters.
“If the public is interested by my work, it would be great if Twilight fans went to see Bel Ami. I learned a lot reading the book and working on that movie. I think the public, especially the younger generation will learn a lot with that movie.”
Bel Ami opens across Quebec on March 2nd.