Director Jaco Van Dormael has been absent from film for almost 14 years since making Toto The Hero and The Eighth Day.
The Belgian writer/director hasn’t been twiddling his thumbs, though. His latest movie, Mr. Nobody was a passion project. The complex film about the many different lives one man could live took him years to write.
With a variety of storylines and possible realities vying for attention, it was hardly an easy script to pull together.
“It took me about seven years to write,” Van Dormael says. “I wanted to make something very different. I wanted to ... explore how far we could go in storytelling in a way that resembles my perception of life, where nothing really comes into focus at the end and the story grows like a tree with limitless possibilities.”
It’s certainly a film that will frustrate as many viewers as it enthralls, but such is the case of any project by a filmmaker trying to break new boundaries in the medium.
Mr. Nobody was ambitious in scale as well as content. Given one of the largest budgets ever granted for a Belgian production, Van Dormael worked with a variety of international actors including Sarah Polley.