Francis Ford Coppola, the legendary director of Apocalypse Now and The Godfather, has been awfully tight-lipped about Twixt Now and Sunrise, his mysterious Val Kilmer-starring project, considering that it has been underway in Napa, California for some time now. Thankfully, the New York Times managed to squeeze some new information from Coppola, including some more details about the film's genre (horror-thriller) and some of his exciting casting choices.
Twixt Now and Sunrise actually "grew out of a dream I had last year - more of a nightmare," Coppola said in a statement. "[It] seemed to have the imagery of Hawthorne or Poe." While the director didn't reveal any plot details, he explained that "as I was having it I realized perhaps it was a gift, as I could make it as a story, perhaps a scary film… so I recorded what I remembered right there and then on my phone. I realized that it was a gothic romance setting, so in fact I'd be able to do it all around my home base, rather than have to got to a distant country." The memories Coppola recorded as he was waking up soon became a short story ("something I always do as a first step") and then a screenplay.
Coppola also revealed that in addition to Kilmer, Twixt Now and Sunrise will star Elle Fanning (Stephen Dorff's co-star in Sofia Coppola's Somewhere, which just won the top prize at the Venice Film Festival) and Joanne Whalley (Kilmer's ex-wife), as well as Bruce Dern, Ben Chaplin, Don Novello, David Paymer, and Alden Erenreich, who starred in Coppola's Tetro just last year. Fanning will play "a young ghost named 'V,'" but no other character details have been released.
Twixt Now and Sunrise is currently shooting in and around Coppola's hometown of Napa, California - mostly at his own estate. That's part of the reason Coppola expects the film to cost under $7 million to make, which is good news since he is personally financing the film and producing it. (A personal investment of that kind might intimidate a lesser director, but as we know, if anyone has the hubris to flirt with bankruptcy in order to realize a dream, it is Coppola.)
While the film doesn't yet have a distributer, Coppola said he was optimistic that the "gothic romance/horror subject matter may make it good for this time next year." Let's hope so: Halloween 2011 just got a lot more interesting.