MOVIES | Atom Egoyan talks about his new movie “Chloe,” directing without writing, and putting A-list actors in kinky situations


With his new film Chloe, a drama/mystery/sexual thriller, two-time Oscar-nominated Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan (Exotica, The Sweet Hereafter, and Where the Truth Lies) has pushed the boundaries of sexual exploration and intrigue once again.

Based on Anne Fontaine’s French film Nathalie (2004) starring Fanny Ardant, Emmanuelle Beart, and Gerard Depardieu, Egoyan’s film, opening Friday at a few local theaters, was written by Erin Cressida Wilson (screenwriter of Secretary) and produced by Ivan Reitman (Ghostbusters). The impressive cast includes Julianne Moore, Liam Neeson, and Amanda Seyfried as Chloe. Taking place in Egoyan’s hometown of Toronto, Chloe follows married couple Catherine (Moore) and David (Neeson), whose marriage has been strained lately. When David misses a flight back home, Catherine becomes suspicious of David being unfaithful—only she cannot prove it. One night out with some friends at a nice restaurant, Catherine meets prostitute Chloe (Seyfried) in the bathroom. Thinking the possibility of David’s infidelity, Catherine hires Chloe to pursue David and tempt him, to see if he’ll act. As Chloe begins to tell Catherine about their illicit meetings, Catherine becomes interested in Chloe for her own reasons and makes some rather difficult choices that could ruin not only her family, but her life.

Egoyan was in town last week, and we talked about how he has been fortunate to work with the same crew for close to 20 years, how he was able to get A-list actors to commit to this film, about the much-buzzed-about sex scene in the film, and if he would ever consider doing a different type of film, perhaps a western. Chloe is his first film in many years that he hasn’t written the screenplay for, so my first question for him was: how different was it working on this film, not as the writer and director but as only the director?

Click play button below to hear Jim Brunzell’s interview with Atom Egoyan.