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About The Production
The look of IN THE CUT emerges from the tradition of the gritty, independent-minded, emotionally-charged dramas and thrillers that distinguished US filmmaking in the 1970s. From the very beginning, Campion wanted to capture the kind of intensely atmospheric visuals that made those films so memorable and human, adding her own distinctive, contemporary touches to the style. "You have to acknowledge that the brilliant films of the 70s sort of redefined the genre of noir films," says Campion. "And this is my widest new reinterpretation of the genre."

A major touchstone for the filmmakers was Klute. "We used Klute as a key visual reference point for IN THE CUT because it's a great iconic film that also melds a love story and a mystery together just like IN THE CUT," says Campion. "It's also one of my favorite films and every time I see it I wonder – why aren't people making more love story-mystery-detective dramas?"

Other films Campion watched as a prelude to making IN THE CUT include Taxi Driver, which Campion notes for its poetic urban realism, and The French Connection, the film that turned the adrenaline of the police procedure into a major cinematic addiction. She also researched the classic noir films of the 40s with their femme fatales and starkly defined shadows.

To heighten the realism further, Campion relied on extensive research. "Part of Jane's goal was to give the film a real jolt of reality, so we had real poetry professors consulting with us, real linguists, real kids who speak in street slang, real New York City detectives, and even real sexual experts," explains Laurie Parker. "We researched everything to the nth degree which, by the time you get it on the camera, gives it a real specificity, makes it jump out in a way that is entirely unique and believable."

Ultimately, Campion used New York City as her primary inspiration, choosing to shoot in the heart of the city, rather than use a stand-in. "The whole of the lower half of Manhattan, where the story is set, is so full of life, and stuff is happening there all the time and that led to this idea that everything we see and hear down there is all part of our story," she says.

Campion moved the story from the West Village locale of the novel to the funkier East Village. "The East Village has this kind of hand-made feeling to it," she observes. "It's full of efforts to create a little bit of beauty and nature in the middle of the city, and I just think that's the kind of place Frannie would live."

"There was a sense of tragedy and despair and uncertainty there that is not unlike the mood of noir films," comments Laurie Parker. "It became an interesting landscape for a noir thriller that hadn't ever, obviously, been used before."

In shooting that landscape, Campion worked with Director of Photography Dion Beebe, ACS to mix raw realism with a more poetic sensibility. She also encouraged production designer David Brisbin to develop a surprising scheme of light, ephemeral colors and textures, in order to achieve an original look that radically alters the typical dark, heavy constructs of thrillers.

"Despite the fact that the story of IN THE CUT explores so many dark edges, it's really a love story of passion and warmth so we


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