"I'm so delighted to have such a great team"–an interview with RUM DIARY director Bruce Robinson

“I’m working with the world’s most famous movie star all of a sudden,” director Bruce Robinson told Screen International‘s Wendy Mitchell in a recent interview. “It’s kind of a shock to the central nervous system.” Robinson is referring to the fact that he has been absent from the director’s chair since 1992. However, his affection for Hunter S. Thompson’s novel and his regard for Johnny Depp, who approached him about adapting and directing The Rum Diary nearly four years ago, persuaded him to say yes. “It’s really about Hunter S. Thompson before he became Hunter S. Thompson,” Robinson explains. “He’s looking for that voice.”

Robinson does see some similarities between The Rum Diary and his own much-lauded comedy Withnail and I: “The Rum Diary is a much more sophisticated film, and it’s got boats and car chases, but I’m going to try to keep it simple, and in that way it’s like Withnail and I,” he explains. The “surreal humor” which rises from the characters’ situations is another common factor. “It’s a frightening, thrilling ride, but I’m so delighted to have such a great team,” says Robinson. “I’m driven to make this great film to live up to the material and to Johnny. [. . .] It’s not a solo effort.”

The photo at left shows the director with his star on the set of The Rum Diary in Puerto Rico; to see a larger version of the photo, CLICK HERE. The Zone thanks Emma for the Bruce Robinson interview; you can read more on the Porch forum. –Part-Time Poet