Write On: 'Anatomy of a Fall' Writer/Director Justine Triet
November 2, 2023
“Starting to write a project like this, we always begin with a set of very strong personal desires,” says Anatomy of a Fall writer/director Justine Triet, adding, “I’m quite reticent of scripts that are too clever or that clearly have the intention of disseminating things where information or the person disseminating information has the upper hand over my ability to navigate the narrative.”
The new film Anatomy of a Fall won the Palme d’Or at the recent Cannes Film Festival and could be called Anatomy of a Marriage – at least one that ends in a mysterious tragedy. Set in a remote village in the French Alps – perhaps reminiscent of the hotel in The Shining, frustrated writer Samuel (Samuel Theis), is found dead in the snow beneath his family’s chalet and his wife Sandra (Sandra Hüller), becomes the number one suspect in his suspicious death. In this shocking family drama that moves into a chaotic courtroom, the verdict comes down to the couple’s 11-year-old blind son’s gut-wrenching testimony.
Directed by Justine Triet from a script written by Triet and her own life-partner Arthur Harari, Triet talks about writing the film from an emotional place and not relying on structure or over-used devices like flashbacks to create a deeper sense of mystery.
This film is the best lesson on how to tell a character-driven murder mystery – while keeping the audience guessing – I’ve seen in a long time!
Listen to the podcast to go deeper into how Triet crafted the story.
Written by: Shanee EdwardsShanee Edwards is an L.A.-based screenwriter, journalist and novelist who recently won The Next MacGyver television writing competition to create a TV show about a female engineer and was honored to be mentored by actress/producers America Ferrera. Shanee's first novel, Ada Lovelace: The Countess Who Dreamed in Numbers was published by Conrad Press in 2019. Currently, she is working on a biopic of controversial nurse Florence Nightingale. Shanee’s ultimate goal is to tell stories about strong, spirited women whose passion, humor and courage inspire us all.