“Our prop department messed up and didn’t score the fake lamp properly; half of it was real, and when he smacked his head, it just — whoosh!— blood was gushing everywhere.” Foster raced into action. “It was just me and the producer running around with a first-aid kit trying to stanch the blood, and Mel’s like, ‘Come on, it hurts! I can’t tell you how many ‘I’m so sorry’ notes I sent.” She smiles in fond recollection of that moment, probably the last unsullied time she’d have before being caught up in the Gibson tornado. Then he came on set, and he didn’t have any makeup on, anything.
On July 9, the day the first tapes came out, months after principal photography had wrapped, Foster was with Gibson again for the last day of additional shoots. Then he got on the plane and left.” [pullquote] Where that left the film remained a mystery at the time. “We had talks with Jodie and Mel and our partners at Participant,” Summit co-chairman and CEO Rob Friedman recalls. She and Mel are critical portions of the film, and Jodie has dedicated herself to that.” How much Gibson can do at this point is unclear. ’ ” Given everything she’s facing, it’s remarkable that she remains so sanguine.I don’t need to make those kinds of movies because my career as a director is a personal spiritual path. I said, ‘Look, I’m going to send you something, and the bad news is you have to tell us in 24 hours,’ because there was another actor interested.” The next day, Gibson called and said he needed just 10 hours more to discuss it with his agent, then gave her a yes. For one thing, there was an arm-cutting scene — present from the very first draft of the script — that many potential financiers resisted, not so much because of its gruesomeness but because it might have made Gibson’s character seem disturbed.I don’t need to succeed in that way in order to have an identity. “A lot of places were categorical that, if his arm comes off, they don’t want to be involved in the movie,” Foster says.They had doubts about how to sell the project, Foster says, but that did not impact production, which commenced in summer 2009 in Westchester County, N.Y., benefiting from the state’s generous subsidies.Foster hesitates about saying too much, at first afraid her mother will read this before realizing that can’t happen.“She’s old, and she has dementia now, so she’s in a new place,” she reflects. She lives at home with lots of care.” Her passion for her mother remains evident, with new layers added now that Foster is a mother herself. “And now that she’s really a new person, a different person — a very nice person, just not the mom I grew up with — I have a real nostalgia for who she was.“Depression is a part of my life I accept,” she says, explaining its cause as a sort of obsessive rumination.“You think about something and you think about it again, and you keep going back to a tragic or dramatic moment and try to understand all different angles — and that’s the process of depression, which is not being able to get out of a dramatic thought or feeling. But it’s a big part of my life, and you have to embrace that part of yourself.” An even bigger part has been the effective withdrawal of her mother, Brandy — the vital, anti-authoritarian presence who dominated Foster’s early life and encouraged her acting.I already have one.” ), where it remained, potentially as a broad comedy. The thing that makes it interesting to me was the psychological dimension of his trouble, the fable quality to that.” Carell, who remained attached, allowed Foster to take the project to other actors, knowing his schedule would cause long delays. “Golin went so far as to create a script where the arm come off.When Foster’s agent, ICM’s Joe Funicello, heard about it, he showed her the script, and when Roach pulled out, Foster joined producer Steve Golin, who’d developed the material. “I wouldn’t have been interested in doing the movie as a comedy in any way,” she says. And I was like, ‘Why would you even tell this story?