Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom is set to open the 65th Cannes Film festival.  The director recently sat down and answered questions on the Norman Rockwell-type film, and about his debut in the Cannes Film Festival.

Thanks to The Hollywood Reporter for conducting the interview.  Are you excited to see Moonrise Kingdom on May 25?  You can watch the trailer here.

The Hollywood Reporter: So how do you describe what this film is about?
Wes Anderson: I usually avoid answering that, but I think I would have to say it’s a romance between two 12-year-olds in 1965. To me, that’s the center of it.

THR: Why 1965?
Anderson: The truth is I thought I would have this narrator hosting the film. The first paragraph I wrote for him, I just spontaneously wrote, “The year is 1965.” I hadn’t really intended it. It was sort of a spontaneous moment. I do think that the scouts and its Norman Rockwell-type of Americana is sort of part of it. It seems like 1965 is really the end of one kind of America.

THR: The scouts ­— in the movie they’re called the Khaki Scouts — are a big part of the film. Were you a Boy Scout?
Anderson: I gave it a shot. It didn’t really take. I never really was much of a camper. I don’t think I even made it a month. I didn’t get any rank or anything.

THR: Is this an idea you’ve been developing for some time?
Anderson: I’ve been thinking about it for quite a while. For probably eight or 10 years I had it vaguely in mind, but I didn’t know what it was likely to evolve into. I spent about a year working on the script, and I didn’t make very good progress. But then I got some help from Roman Coppola, who’s worked with me before. He really helped me sort it out, and then we had the script in a month, and six weeks later it was completely finished. It started with the idea of a romance between two 12-year-olds, and a lot of the story would take place among children and not really involve the adults. The adult characters sort of came later.

THR: Your two lead actors, Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward, have never appeared in a film before. Was that by design?
Anderson: I didn’t really have much in way of preconceptions of what they ought to be like. My experience with casting children has always been “start early, keep going, keep going, keep going.” Eventually they just appear. We had a number of different kids I kept setting aside for this thing. Most of them became the scout troop. I always knew I didn’t have the one who seemed right for the character until this kid, Jared, appeared. When he read, he was wearing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar-style plastic glasses with a strap around the back of his head. His hair was very long. He couldn’t look like that in the movie, but he was immediately funny, and it was more his interview with the casting director that first grabbed me — his voice and his spirit. The same thing for Kara, the girl. In her audition, she just read so authentically, she really seemed as if she was making up the dialogue herself, and that didn’t happen with any of the other kids I read for anything.

THR: How did you put together the adult cast? You’ve worked with Bill Murray many times before, but Edward Norton and Bruce Willis are new to your films.
Anderson: I had wanted to have Bill Murray and Fran McDormand together. That was something I had very early on. Why Bill agreed to do it, I don’t know. But I always have such a good time with him, and I’ve always loved what he did for my movies. I’m just lucky enough that so far, he doesn’t pass on them. Edward Norton is someone I’d been talking with for some years. Edward definitely does seem as if he could have posed for Norman Rockwell. And as for Bruce Willis, his character is not what you’d normally associate with him, but he is a policeman, so you just know he’s going to be an authentic policeman. It seemed like he might kind of ground the whole thing.

THR: The opening of the movie reminded me of your animated film Fantastic Mr. Fox. Did the design of that movie carry over into this one?
Anderson: I think it did. On Fantastic Mr. Fox, I got used to working with animated storyboards as a way of planning for the shoot. We did a lot of sequences that way with this movie. Partly as a result of that, I decided to build more sets in order to do certain shots. The interior of the Bishop family house is a set. In the past, I always would have used locations. But we modeled the interior of the house on five different houses in different parts of the country. We mixed them all together as if it were one thing. The rooms were laid out completely horizontally. It’s not really suited for living. It’s really suited for a dolly track.

THR: This is your first visit to Cannes. Are you feeling any pressure about being selected as the opening-night film?
Anderson: No, I feel quite honored. As much it’s about opening night, it’s about being invited to be in competition. That was great news because the whole plan for the movie’s release was based on starting it in Cannes. And I don’t really have to do anything. As far as I’m told I have to walk up the staircase and then sit and watch the movie. I don’t have to give a speech. So it’s not like we’re putting on a play. I more or less know how the movie’s going to go. I don’t know what everyone’s going to think of it, but there’s nothing I can do about that anyway.

Starz has decided that their original programming can compete with the other hot shows airing on Sunday nights.

Network CEO Chris Albrecht has told THR that they are planning on moving all of their original shows including Outlander, Ash Vs Evil Dead, and Black Sails — which currently air on Saturdays — to Sundays. The move will begin July 17 with the Starz series Power. Outlander will likely not move to Sundays until next season.

“Sundays are a prestige night and we feel our shows are definitely going to be very competitive, not just in viewership but in the attention-getting business on Sundays,” Albrecht said to THR, “So it made sense to move.”

Outlander and Starz’s other original series will be going up against tough competition, including AMC’s The Walking Dead and HBO’s Game of Thrones. Albrecht says part of the reason he wanted to move the shows was to make sure they were part of the watercooler talk on Monday mornings.

THR notes that Showtime’s original series typically get DVR’d, “growing 214 percent [in viewership] during the course of a week.” This would suggest that a lot of people aren’t sitting in front of a TV on Saturdays and want to watch the shows on a different day of the week. So, moving their programming to Sundays may not impact overall viewership numbers much.

Starz recently overtook Showtime as the second-most subscribed to cable channel. HBO still sits at number one, though all three are facing tough competition from Netflix.

Disney has set its sights on another live-action retelling of an animated classic: The Little Mermaid.

Deadline reports that the studio “recently heard a new take and are currently evaluating whether to proceed with the idea,” and “discussions have also taken place with some major producers, including some with a strong connection to the studio.”

That’s all we know for now. A “new take” makes it sound like they could be contemplating an alternate story than the one we saw in the 1989 animated classic, but I’d personally prefer a direct adaptation. I want to see live-action Ariel sing some of the Disney classics! Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book has spoiled me.

Like Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid is one of Disney’s most beloved animated movies, so expectations for a live-action adaptation will immediately be set very high. With their recent adaptation of The Jungle Book hitting theaters to very positive reviews and the first trailer for their live-action Beauty and the Beast being very well received, it wouldn’t be shocking to see Disney start to look at other potential animated properties for source material. (But you would’ve expected to hear about a live-action Lion King before Little Mermaid after The Jungle Book’s success, wouldn’t you?)

The Little Mermaid is the latest in a long line of animated-to-live action projects in the works at Disney. Others include an Aladdin spinoff looking at the Genie’s origins, The Jungle Cruise starring Dwayne Johnson, Dumbo with director Tim Burton, Mary Poppins with Lin-Manuel Miranda and Emily Blunt, and Tinker Bell with Reese Witherspoon. And then there are sequels to the adaptations like Maleficent 2 and The Jungle Book 2.

Be sure to cross The Little Mermaid off your animated-to-live-action bingo card.

Do you think Disney can pull off a live-action ‘Little Mermaid’?

With Donald Trump’s presidency looking less and less like a joke, these high-profile authors and writers believe the time for silence is over.

Over 400 authors have signed a petition to keep Donald Trump out of the White House.

The petition, titled “An open letter to the American people,” was written by Andrew Altschul and Mark Slouka. It unequivocally states that Trump must not become President of the United States, and explains why writers in particular are worried about the power of his empty words and fear-mongering rhetoric.

Signed by the likes of Stephen King, Junot Diaz, Daniel Handler (Lemony Snicket), Cheryl Strayed, Colm Tóibín and Jennifer Egan, the open letter lays out reasons for openly opposing Trump’s candidacy, which they believe “appeals to the basest and most violent elements in society.”

The letter states:

“Because, as writers, we are particularly aware of the many ways that language can be abused in the name of power;

Because we believe that any democracy worthy of the name rests on pluralism, welcomes principled disagreement, and achieves consensus through reasoned debate;

Because American history, despite periods of nativism and bigotry, has from the first been a grand experiment in bringing people of different backgrounds together, not pitting them against one another;

Because the history of dictatorship is the history of manipulation and division, demagoguery and lies;

Because the search for justice is predicated on a respect for the truth;

Because we believe that knowledge, experience, flexibility, and historical awareness are indispensable in a leader;

Because neither wealth nor celebrity qualifies anyone to speak for the United States, to lead its military, to maintain its alliances, or to represent its people;

Because the rise of a political candidate who deliberately appeals to the basest and most violent elements in society, who encourages aggression among his followers, shouts down opponents, intimidates dissenters, and denigrates women and minorities, demands, from each of us, an immediate and forceful response;

For all these reasons, we, the undersigned, as a matter of conscience, oppose, unequivocally, the candidacy of Donald J. Trump for the Presidency of the United States.”

While there are plenty of arguments for why Trump should not receive as much media coverage as he gets, we have to acknowledge the seriousness of the situation when some of the country’s most respected artists take such a powerful stance as this.

The petition has been signed by over 7,000 people so far, and you can add your name to the list right here.

You can find out more about the group of writers who oppose Trump on Twitter, at @WritersOnTrump.