David and Nathan Zellner – Damsel #Berlinale2018

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13 min. and 56 sec.

Subverting the Western genre by turning it into a feminist film.

Play Podcast
13 min. and 56 sec.

PODCAST| Chiara Nicoletti interviews David and Nathan Zellner, directors of the film Damsel.

To listen to the interview, click on the ► icon on the right, just above the picture

After premiering their latest feature, Damsel, at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, David and Nathan Zellner are in competition at the 68th Berlinale. Damsel is their first western but as they admit, it is a feminist western that aims at deconstructing the whole genre while breaking every single one of its stereotypes and archetypes. So Nathan chose himself for the part of the damsel in distress while giving Mia Wasikowska the role that usually went to men in traditional western movies. Robert Pattinson could be mistaken for the knight in shining armour but only for half hour. David and Nathan Zellner finally explain how they worked on balancing the surreal elements, the comedic and slapstick ones along with the dramatic moments.

Damsel:  Samuel Alabaster (Robert Pattinson), an affluent pioneer, ventures across the American Frontier to marry the love of his life, Penelope (Mia Wasikowska). As Samuel traverses the Wild West with a drunkard named Parson Henry (David Zellner) and a miniature horse called Butterscotch, their once-simple journey grows treacherous, blurring the lines between hero, villain and damsel. A loving reinvention of the western genre from the Zellner brothers (Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter), Damsel showcases their trademark unpredictability, off-kilter sense of humour, and unique brand of humanism.

To discover more about the film, click here.

  • Reporter
    Chiara Nicoletti
  • Guest
    David and Nathan Zellner
  • Interviewee role
  • Film title
  • Festival section
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