Jon Favreau goes swimming with his kids if his films flop
Jon Favreau goes swimming with his kids if one of his films is a flop.
The 50-year-old actor-and-director's last project was working on the remake of Disney classic 'The Jungle Book', a critical and box office success, but he accepts that not every movie he puts out will do so well.
If the response to one of his projects is not what he was hoping for, then Favreau takes some time out with his three kids - son Max, 15, and two daughters, Madeleine, 14, and nine-year-old Brighton Rose, aged nine - and his wife Joya Tillem to get into a different head space.
Speaking during a Q&A session at the Tribeca Film Festival where actress Scarlett Johansson was the interviewer, Favreau revealed that every time he "would start to get bummed out" by the reaction to his 2011 sci-fi film 'Cowboys and Aliens' he'd go swimming with his kids as a distraction.
Favreau said: "By the end of the summer, I was so tanned. I would look in the mirror and I'd say, 'I'm going out to the pool a lot.' "
'Cowboys and Aliens' - which starred Daniel Craig, Olivia Wilde and Harrison Ford - was considered to be a financial disappointment, after it took just $174.8 million at the box office, despite costing $163 million to make.
It received mixed reviews, with critics praising the acting and production but panning some inconsistencies in the plot.
But when he does take the directors' seat for a film, Favreau admits he gets "completely immersed" in the project.
He explained: "When you direct it, you have to love it, especially one of those that takes like two or three years to do. Love it to the point of obsession. So there are things that I might want to see or be involved with or act in but that's a lot different than I have to live, breathe, sleep it, dream it. If I'm going to do my best work, I have to be completely immersed."
Favreau has been entrusted by Walt Disney Pictures to helm the remake of 'The Lion King', which stars the likes of Donald Glover as Simba and James Earl Jones as Mufasa, and he admits he feels the pressure for his work to live up to fans' "expectations" when re-working these Disney animated classics.
He said: "What I'm trying to do is honour what was there ... There are certain expectations people have. 'The Jungle Book' was 50 years ago; 'Lion King' was 20, and people grew up with it in an age of video where they're watching it over and over again. So, I have to really examine all of those plot points. Also, the myths are very strong in that, so you're hitting something even deeper than the movie sometimes."
And in order to tap into the viewers' best loved movie moments, Favreau said he tries to recall his own memories.
He said: "I remember Mowgli and the snake. I remember the snake's eyes. I remember Baloo going down the river and Mowgli riding on him like a raft. I made a big list, and I said those are the images we definitely need ... It's about the audience having the experience they're hoping they have, and if you can surprise them along the way, they'll enjoy it even more, but you gotta live up to what they want, so you get greater pressure with these beloved stories."