French star Huppert finds meaning in unstructured nature of 'Traveler's Needs'

‘I did two other films with Hong Sangsoo, and his way of making films is unique,’ the French star said ahead of the film's screening in Berlin

Reuters
Published : 20 Feb 2024, 10:54 AM
Updated : 20 Feb 2024, 10:54 AM

French star Isabelle Huppert said she was drawn to working with South Korean director Hong Sangsoo for a third time in "A Traveller's Needs," which premiered in Berlin on Monday, because of the uniquely unstructured nature of his work.

"I did two other films with Hong Sangsoo, and his way of making films is unique," Huppert told journalists ahead of the film's screening at the Berlin Film Festival, explaining how Hong gives actors their lines just before shooting.

"It might sound, when you say it like this, it might sound like something impossible to master or to control, but it's the total opposite, actually," said Huppert, who previously worked with the director on "Claire's Camera" and "In Another Country."

"He really makes some kind of very philosophical statement about what it means to be alive, what it means to be a human being, what it means to be alone, and what it means to be together," said Huppert, who received an honorary Golden Bear prize in 2022 for her lifetime achievement as an actor.

"A Traveller's Needs," Hong's fifth consecutive film to be selected for the festival, features Huppert as a French woman in South Korea with an unusual method of teaching language and a penchant for drinking the milky-white rice wine makgeolli.

"This might sound very, very irresponsible, but I don't know what I am doing," Hong said at the Monday press conference.

"I believe in a certain, how can I say, happening between people. Me and Isabelle, me and the weather, me and the places, all these things happen," Hong said to explain his method.