By William Wolf


George Clooney appeared disarmingly good natured at a press conference held for the film “Our Brand Is Crisis” at the 2105 Toronto International Film Festival. A co-producer of the film, he looked thoroughly relaxed and even seemed to be enjoying himself. He gave the impression of being a very affable guy with no agenda of trying to dominate others who participated and impress the journalists and critics in the room.

Sandra Bullock, who stars in the film, was also very congenial, not in the least bit the prima donna. She and Clooney seemed very much in tune.

“George and I have known each since long before we had jobs in this business,” Bullock said, noting that they were just out of college. Differences?

“We disagree well and we fight fair,” Bullock said, adding, “That’s a nice thing to be able to still say after all these years.”

Their friendship led to how “Our Brand of Crisis,” turned out. As the film was developed Clooney was slated to play the lead. But Bullock saw the role as good one for herself and she put the suggestion to Clooney. He agreed, hence a reversal took place. Now the role is that of a woman instead of a man and Bullock, also an Executive Producer, is playing Jane Bodine, a political consultant who wants to swing an election in Bolivia.

“It is about big business and how people are manipulated by advertisers,” said Bullock. Clooney made the point that there was no effort to tie the film to U.S. or Canadian politics. “Our Brand Is Crisis” has been directed by David Gordon Green from a screenplay by Peter Straughan. Also starring are Billy Bob Thornton, Anthony Mackie, Joaquim De Almeida, Ann Dowd, Scoot McNairy and Zoe Kazan.

Both Clooney and Bullock enjoy dishing out humor in their responses. Some of the questions at press conferences can be pretty silly. For example, someone asked Clooney whether after a film is over he carries the character with him.

He teasingly assured the questioner that he did, extending his arms and making energetic flying in space motions reminiscent of “Gravity.”

When asked how Bullock felt about competition for an Oscar, she responded: “I always vote for myself, even if not nominated. I vote for myself just to show I’m there.”

Bullock made a point about the importance of women having increased presence in filmmaking. Clooney, agreeing, quipped, “We’re going to make ‘12 Angry Women.” Posted October 29, 2015.


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