Die laughing with Roman Coppola's comic turn

 

Roman Coppola, son of Francis Ford Coppola and big brother to Lost in Translation director Sofia, is not a funny man.

At least, that's what he thinks. Audiences may beg to differ when they see Die Again, Undead One, a surreal short film he has directed as part a short film series for W Hotels and Intel, which stars his cousin the actor Jason Schwartzman as a leather-clad gigolo and Coppola as a director shooting a low-budget vampire flick.

"Jason is just very, very witty – he's the funny one. I wouldn't say I have that knack. Not in person at least," says Coppola, 47, who is supremely laid-back despite a movie mogul get-up that includes Seventies shades and a shirt emblazoned with the letters RC.

Schwartzman also features in Coppola's forthcoming feature film A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III, which stars Charlie Sheen in the lead as a dumped and desolate Seventies playboy trying to piece his life back together post break-up. Schwartzman plays as his best friend and Bill Murray appears as his depressed accountant. It is set to be Coppola's biggest film yet, and it is, say the few who saw it at the Rome Film Festival last month, beautifully nostalgic and retro if a little too dreamy for some people's tastes. Coppola, who also wrote and produced the film, says it is his "favourite" work yet.

Coppola has directed just one feature film before, CQ, which screened out of competition at Cannes 11 years ago to mixed reviews. He has spent more time behind the scenes than in the director's chair, producing several of his sister's films, collaborating as writer, producer and second unit director on several Wes Anderson films (he co-wrote this year's Cannes Film Festival hit Moonrise Kingdom.)

Is there a lot of pressure coming from Hollywood royalty? "No, film is like eating to me. It feels completely natural." Coppola is unfailingly complimentary about all of his family and colleagues: dad is an "inspiration", cousin Nicolas Cage is "pretty far out but super talented". He and Sofia have always worked well together, he adds. "When we were little she used to have a sewing machine – I'd help her make costumes."

It was tough persuading others to hire Sheen, fired last year from TV show Two and a Half Men. "Sure, people were concerned that he wouldn't be reliable. I just had a gut feeling about Charlie. I think he's wildly talented. I'd like to think I'm rediscovering him in the way Robert Downey Jr was rediscovered."

To watch 'Die Again, Undead One' go to youtube.com/fourstories

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksAn evocation of the conflict through the eyes of those who lived through it
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Save the Tiger: Meet the hunters tasked with protecting Russia's rare Amur tiger

    Hunters protect Russia's rare Amur tiger

    In an unusual move, wildlife charities have enlisted those who kill animals to help save them. Oliver Poole travels to Siberia to investigate
    Transfers: How has your club fared in summer sales?

    How has your club fared in summer sales?

    Who have bagged the bargain buys and who have landed the giant turkeys
    Warwick Davis: The British actor on Ricky Gervais, how the Harry Potter set became his office, and why he'd like to play a spy

    'I'm a realist; I know how hard this business is'

    Warwick Davis on Ricky Gervais, Harry Potter and his perfect role
    The best swim shorts for men: Bag yourself the perfect pair and make a splash this summer

    The best swim shorts for men

    Bag yourself the perfect pair and make a splash this summer
    Has Ukip’s Glastonbury branch really been possessed by the devil?

    Has Ukip’s Glastonbury branch really been possessed by the devil?

    Meet the couple blamed for bringing Lucifer into local politics
    Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

    Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

    Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
    Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

    Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

    When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
    5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

    In grandfather's footsteps

    5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
    Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

    Martha Stewart has flying robot

    The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
    Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

    Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

    Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
    A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

    A tale of two presidents

    George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
    Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

    The dining car makes a comeback

    Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
    Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

    Gallery rage

    How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
    Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

    Eye on the prize

    Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
    Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

    Women's rugby

    Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup