Wes Anderson on directing Bruce Willis, Edward Norton for the First Time

Interviews with people who shape our culture.
May 17 2012 11:33 AM

The Circle of Wes Expands

Bruce Willis, Tilda Swinton, and Edward Norton join Bill Murray in Wes Anderson’s latest feature Moonrise Kingdom.

The cast of Moonrise Kingdom at the 65th Cannes film festival.
The cast and crew of Moonrise Kingdom pose before a screening of the film at the Cannes Film Festival on May 16, 2012

Photograph by Alberto Pizzoli/AFP/GettyImages.

The ensemble cast is one of the hallmarks of Wes Anderson’s films. And over the years, Anderson has developed close working relationships and friendships with Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, and Jason Schwartzman.

Anderson has cast Murray for a sixth time in his latest feature, Moonrise Kingdom, which premiered this week at the Cannes Film Festival. Joining Murray in the Anderson ensemble for the first time are Bruce Willis, Tilda Swinton, Frances McDormand, and Edward Norton.

In an interview with Slate’s Jacob Weisberg, Anderson says that during filming there was a big family vibe on set and off. So much so that Anderson shared a house with his editor, his director of photography, Norton, and Murray. The Oscar-nominated director also explains why he loves working with Murray, whom he first cast in Rushmore in 1998. Beyond his acting chops, Anderson maintains that few people can calm an angry mob as well as Murray can.

You can watch Part 1 of Anderson’s interview, in which he talks about the challenges of casting and working with child actors in Moonrise Kingdom. In the second segment, Anderson explains why he loves stop-motion animation. Anderson answers Slate reader questions in Part 3. And in the days ahead, look for an audio podcast of the full interview.

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

Don’t Worry, Obama Isn’t Sending U.S. Troops to Fight ISIS

But the next president might. 

The Extraordinary Amicus Brief That Attempts to Explain the Wu-Tang Clan to the Supreme Court Justices

Amazon Is Officially a Gadget Company. Here Are Its Six New Devices.

The Human Need to Find Connections in Everything

It’s the source of creativity and delusions. It can harm us more than it helps us.

How Much Should You Loathe NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell?

Here are the facts.

Altered State

The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender

What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?

Surprise! The Women Hired to Fix the NFL Think the NFL Is Just Great.

You Shouldn’t Spank Anyone but Your Consensual Sex Partner

Moneybox
Sept. 17 2014 5:10 PM The Most Awkward Scenario in Which a Man Can Hold a Door for a Woman
  News & Politics
Altered State
Sept. 17 2014 11:51 PM The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?
  Business
Business Insider
Sept. 17 2014 1:36 PM Nate Silver Versus Princeton Professor: Who Has the Right Models?
  Life
Dear Prudence
Sept. 18 2014 6:00 AM All Shook Up My 11-year-old has been exploring herself with my “back massager.” Should I stop her?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 17 2014 6:14 PM Today in Gender Gaps: Biking
  Slate Plus
Slate Fare
Sept. 17 2014 9:37 AM Is Slate Too Liberal?  A members-only open thread.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 17 2014 8:25 PM A New Song and Music Video From Angel Olsen, Indie’s Next Big Thing
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 17 2014 9:00 PM Amazon Is Now a Gadget Company
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 18 2014 7:30 AM Red and Green Ghosts Haunt the Stormy Night
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 17 2014 3:51 PM NFL Jerk Watch: Roger Goodell How much should you loathe the pro football commissioner?