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Terrence Malick Will Complete Back-To-Back Films Simultaneously; ‘Voyage of Time’ Not Coming Anytime Soon

Written by on September 4, 2012 

With Terrence Malick juggling so many projects we’ve been curious as to the timeframe we’ll actually see them. Last year gave as his astounding epic The Tree of Life, while this year To the Wonder is arriving on the fall festival circuit. Then he’s currently hard at work on back-to-back features, as well as his documentary spin-off of Tree, titled Voyage of Time. But why the sudden burst in creativity and when will the notorious perfectionist dive into completing each?

The people that help make his projects happen, producers Sarah Green and Nicolas Gonda, sat down with ScreenDaily to give us a brief, but worthwhile update on his process. First up, they confirm that the Christian Bale-starring Knight of Cups — which just finished production — is actually about the LA movie business (perhaps accounting for the flurry of minor appearances, seemingly revealed daily). Then they give an update on the Ryan Gosling and Rooney Mara music scene drama (formerly titled Lawless), which we saw test footage being captured throughout the last year, saying that production begins in Texas in just a few weeks. The producers let us know that both features are set in present day and will be edited simultaneously, which hopefully means we’ll see them by the end of 2013 or at least 2014, but don’t expect one before the other with this post-production process.

We’ve also finally got an update on what they describe as the “epic and ambitious” documentary Voyage of Time, which features narration from Brad Pitt and Emma Thompson. As previously reported the film is said to be “aesthetically unique and scientifically accurate” and will chronicle “the whole of time, from the birth of the universe to its final collapse.” It will follow “the first signs of life, bacteria, cellular pioneers, first love, consciousness, the ascent of humanity, life and death and the end of the universe.” As one expected, this will take quite some time and producers confirm, saying “there are large parts shot already but it’s a multi-year project so there’s a way to go yet. Terry has been envisioning it for several decades.” In other words, don’t expect it for awhile.

Lastly, producers were asked what accounts for Malick’s movie-making streak, a question that has puzzled many cinephiles. With the director usually taking at least half-a-decade, sometimes up to two, to complete project, this sudden burst has been exciting, but confounding. Green adds that she doesn’t “know whether anyone can fully explain the creative force. But he’s certainly on a roll. He’s very inspired right now. I expect it has something to do with the team that has formed around him, and the connection he has with them. He has developed a system that he knows works for him.” Then Gonda chimes in that “he’s embracing ideas that allow him to work in a freer fashion, in a way where he is able to rely on a few partners compared to many partners. He wakes up every day with thousands more ideas which he brings to us. It’s an endless reservoir. It’s remarkable. We’re sprinting to keep up. He has more energy than anyone I’ve ever met.

Thankfully it sounds like there’s a lot more Malick in our future, but we’ll take it one step at a time so check back when we hear news on US distribution for To the Wonder and look for our review come TIFF time.

Which Malick project are you most looking forward to?

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