John Cusack stars in Martian Child, directed by Menno Meyjes, as David, a widowed science fiction writer who considers adopting a 6-year-old socially outcast child, Dennis (Bobby Coleman), who claims he's from Mars. John's sister, Joan, plays his sister in Martian Child, based on the novella of the same by David Gerrold. This is the second time he has been in a film directed by Menno Meyjes after being in Max. John Cusack has previously starred in 1408, The Ice Harvest, Must Love Dogs, Identity, Serendipity, High Fidelity, Being John Malkovich, and, in his early days, in Say Anything... and Sixteen Candles. He can also be seen in the upcoming film Grace is Gone. I had the privilege to interview him.
New Line Cinema releases Martian Child on November 2nd, 2007.
NYC MOVIE GURU: Would you ever want to adopt a child with special needs?
JC: I’d like to think I would. As you get older, you become more selfless and that would probably be a good goal.
NYC MOVIE GURU: How often do you talk to your sister, Joan?
JC: My sister doesn’t talk on the phone. I have to go to her house to get her. I won’t call because she doesn’t answer the phone. I always love working with her. I can’t believe they still let us [work together].
NYC MOVIE GURU: How do you end up working together so often?
JC: If there’s a project that I’m producing and, usually, there’s a really funny role, I just ask her to do it because I know she’s just gunna crush it. It’s a no-brainer. She’s a unique performer, so people just lover her. [In this case], it was New Line’s idea, so I loved it.
NYC MOVIE GURU: What were you like as a young kid?
JC: I never belonged to a clique or anything. Then I started doing movies back in high school, so I become popular.
NYC MOVIE GURU: What was it like working with Bobby Coleman?
JC: If you want to see the Buddha, go to a 12-year-old because they’re the best bullshit detectors and the world hasn’t beaten them down. When I worked on this with Bobby [Coleman] and with Shélan O'Keefe in Grace is Gone, and [I realized that] they know everything. They’ve got it all together. Bobby’s a little rock star, which is a little annoying.
NYC MOVIE GURU: What was it like working with director Menno Meyjes for a second time?
JC: Max was a tough movie to get made and it felt like we kinda went through the war together. He’s a very poetic, intelligent man. His take on the material was very interesting. We work in very intense ways, so [in this case] it was still emotional. David is trying to reach to this kid and not getting much back. I’ve seen that with parents who I’ve known with children who have special needs.