Director Wes Anderson takes us behind the scenes of his new romantic adventure, opening May 25.
“As a kid, I never spent time in a place quite like this,” Wes Anderson says. Once again, the director has gone to great lengths to create an entirely new world out of his imagination—in this case, Camp Ivanhoe, the enchanting island sanctuary of Khaki Scout Troop 55, in his new film, Moonrise Kingdom. “Part of why I made the movie was that I would be allowed to invent an island.” The fablelike story follows precocious 12-year-olds Sam and Suzy (played by newcomers Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward) as they fall in love and run away together one summer. “At that age, I was completely floored by love,” Anderson says. “And I wanted to make a movie about being totally unprepared for it.” Also unprepared are Suzy’s parents (Bill Murray and Frances McDormand), the scouts’ troop leader (Edward Norton), a local sheriff (Bruce Willis), and an authoritarian figure named Social Services (Tilda Swinton)—all of whom struggle to shelter the idealistic runaways from the hardships of adulthood. When Sam makes an impassioned plea defending his and Suzy’s exploits, the sheriff—though he agrees with the boy’s logic—can’t condone his behavior, because, he says, “you’re 12 years old.” It’s clear, though, that the lawman is torn between what’s right and what feels right. “He’s thinking, I don’t know…” Anderson says, “but I know I’m supposed to protect you.”