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The Words: Post-screening Q&A

Writers/Directors Lee Sternthal and Brian Klugman of 'The Words' hold a question and answer session, alongside star Bradley Cooper, with the Philadelphia audience after the film's screening.

In the question and answer session following the Philadelphia screening of The Words, writers/directors Lee Strenthal and Brian Klugman charmed the crowd while discussing their impetus for the film and interacting with their hometown crowd.

The Words surrounds a young man tempted by success. What if you’re not the talented writer you always thought you were, but you uncover a manuscript that reflects everything you’ve ever wanted to write? Written around eleven-to-thirteen years ago in the late 90s, while sitting in traffic, Klugman and Strenthal pondered this same question – what would happen if you’re a struggling writer and you discover Hemingway’s lost stories? Do you publish them under an unknown author’s name or do you publish them as your own? The Words investigates the latter and what happens in the aftermath through three separate paths: that of the modern-day struggling young writer (Bradley Cooper); the young post-World War II writer (Ben Barnes) who he steals from; and the established writer who tells both their stories (Randy Quaid).

To help them bring the film to fruition, the writing/directing duo always wanted Bradley to star in the film as Rory, the young writer, and wrote the script with him in mind. Although it became more difficult as Bradley’s demand increased, he remained dedicated to the project. Once Bradley was on board, Jeremy Irons, who formerly worked with Executive Producer Laura Rister on Margin Call, came next as the Old Man. After that, the casting of the other actors soon followed, including Zoe Saldana as the wife, who wanted to give the new directors a chance as so many other directors had given her a chance, as well as Olivia Wilde, who formerly worked with Brian Klugman, when he guested on House. Both Klugman and Strenthal sang Zoe’s praises for bringing passion to the role and helping them to reconstruct the Dora character.

After forming the cast, the next step included finding a location that could portray post-World War II Paris, contemporary Paris, modern-day New York and 1950s New York. They eventually settled on Montreal. Although the production staff filmed The Words in under thirty days on a shoestring budget, you can’t really tell. The film appears lush and majestic while the actors give their all to the film without appearing distracted.

When you watch the video below, it seemed less of a Q&A and more of a homecoming with former teachers and old friends standing to describe their pride in the men on the stage. One old friend even joked that he wrote the script before them. Even the mayor stood to thank them for bringing the event to Philadelphia.

How much does Philly love local boys, Bradley, Lee and Brian? There are no words to describe.

The Words hits theatres September 7th.

Photo Credit: A. Nicholson

Categories: Features, General, News

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