Where the Wild Things Are is Spike Jonze’s Dave Eggers-scripted adaptation of the Maurice Sendak book, and has been bounced around a bit, release-date wise. Earlier this year, it was officially set for October 2009 after having originally been planned for much earlier. AICN recently sat down with Jonze, and like everything AICN does it’s super long, but here are some of the highlights:
AICN: …I think we try and make kids into saints in movies, and we kind of smooth off the rough edges, and it’s just so much more interesting to see a real kid, and to see how kids try and process the world.
JONZE: And I think that’s what freaked the studio out about the movie too. It wasn’t a studio film for kids, or it wasn’t a traditional film about kids. We didn’t have like a Movie Kid in our movie, or a Movie Performance in a Movie Kid world. We had a real kid and a real world, and I think that’s sort of where our problem was. In the end they realized the movie is what it is, and there’s no real way to… it’s sort of like they were expecting a boy and I gave birth to a girl. [laughs] So they just needed their time to sort that out and figure out how they were going to learn to love their new daughter.
…[making the film] just took a lot longer. And that was hard, but you know, in the end I got to make my movie. And with the version you saw, I was trying to get the money to do the pick-ups I wanted to do, and it just took a lot longer to finish it.
It’s good that he doesn’t sound bitter, and it gives me hope that the studio didn’t neuter his movie. Still, I would’ve been more reassured if he’d said “It was like they were expecting a boy, and I gave birth to a Tyranosaur with a chainsaw cock.” Those are easy to learn to love. Harder to give birth to though.