Trading ‘authoritative auteur’ for ‘confident collaborator’ in her approach to directing, Sarah Polley and her key crew describe Creating the Mennonite Community – including Polley writing a version of the dialogue-heavy script which was broken down into ‘beats’, around which blocking, shots, and editing could be designed (via Variety):
The experience of the people making the film is more important than what the film ends up being.Sarah Polley at NYFF60
“[This] shouldn’t be revolutionary, but on a film set it is”: behind the camera, Sarah Polley Established Protocols on Her Women Talking Set for Parents, including limited working hours (“Most days we were home to be able to put our kids to bed, or even sometimes for dinner”), a therapist “specializing in trauma and memory” who was always on set, and “a rule that anyone could take a break at any time… because we were dealing with a difficult subject matter” (via People):
With such “difficult subject matter”, Sarah Polley explains why laughter was key to adapting Miriam Toews’s novel (via Q with Tom Power):
Women Talking was Sarah Polley’s first film in ten years. Her previous film as director, Stories We Tell (2012), is an amazingly-made documentary and, without giving anything away, a entire film school in itself:
Sarah Polley, Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, and Jessie Buckley speak at length about the production process of Women Talking in their Vanity Fair cover story.
More lessons from Sarah Polley, taken from her interview with Team Deakins: