Guy Pearce - Memory Loss
You play a guy with a memory span of a goldfish. How do you play a role
where every time we see you in a scene we have to re-interpret it? It must
put a strain on you.
Were you attracted to this film because it subverts some of the suppositions
that we have about thrillers?
Let's talk about how you started off in "Neighbours". Do you have fond
The first time I saw you in a film was LA Confidential. You and a
young fellow by the name of Russell Crowe, don't know what happened to him!
It takes what you expect to be a standard film of its type and plays around
The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert was a tremendous
movie, a surprising hit and we saw it at the Sydney Olympics.
Tell me about Rules of Engagement - the very odd William
Friedkin movie from last year. There was a lot of shouting in that film.
I've met both he and Tommy Lee Jones very briefly and I get the feeling that
if you got the two of them together it would be quite a volatile mix.
What's next for you?
Guy Pearce talking about his role in Memento
"Leonard Shelby is suffering from this condition which is short term memory loss. Chris, the director, did not want really want to do a film about short term memory loss but he just wanted to use it for its metaphorical potential, I suppose...because we all suffer some kind of identity crisis at times y'know? So he's suffering from this condition and he is also on a mission to find the killer of his wife. There was for me a lot more freedom with this film than in a lot of other projects because the preparation, homework and research one is supposed to do as an actor - for me, maybe I don't have the mental capacity to do it, but I find myself getting bogged down with stuff. I work as an actor purely on instinct and intuition, when I'm inspired by something, y'know?. My imagination. In something like this, my imagination was completely fuelled by the script - I essentially didn't need to do one iota of homework because there is no past, emotionally there does not have to be a continuity from scene to scene, essentially because he wakes up every 10 minutes and says I have no idea what went before. It's difficult for the audience in the 1st half hour as it is hard to ascertain where the black and white stuff fits in relation to the colour stuff. The fact that the colour stuff is going backwards is difficult enough anyway without suddenly interspersing it with this B/W stuff..and you don't know whether it has already happened or if it hasn't happened yet..but that is the point of the film. the point of the film is to throw you into this little land of confusion and you've got to think about this and put these pieces together and work out this puzzle...not that evry innovative film has to be about solving a puzzle and trying to put the pieces together but just give the audience some credit and actually compliment them by saying I'm clever and I know that you're clever-let's see how you go with this."
guy edward pearce