David Fincher Discusses His Latest Film ‘The Killer,’ AI, and Unfinished Ventures


David Fincher is known for his meticulous approach to filmmaking, but he doesn’t like revisiting his own movies, comparing it to looking at old grade school pictures. In his latest film, “The Killer,” starring Michael Fassbender, the actor plays a meticulous hitman who obsesses over every detail, mirroring Fincher’s own exacting nature. The film takes a departure from his previous work, like “Citizen Kane” biography “Mank,” and dives into the world of a revenge thriller with a morbid and sardonic sense of humor.

Fassbender was a natural choice for the film, with production schedules cleverly aligned with his availability during the racing off-season. The cinematographer, Erik Messerschmidt, wasn’t aware he’d be shooting Ferrari, despite the racing theme.

The choice of The Smiths’ “How Soon is Now?” for the killer’s meditation tape was both amusing and revealing, providing a glimpse into the character’s psyche. Originally, the film had a soundtrack with Joy Division and Siouxsie and the Banshees, but the logistics of securing rights led them to lean on The Smiths, which added a unique depth to the character.

The film includes appearances by Amazon, WeWork, and McDonald’s, reflecting the modern assassin’s interface with technology and services. Amazon was supportive and even provided their Amazon “wall” for a scene.

Fincher also shared his thoughts on AI, recognizing its power as a tool but emphasizing the importance of a personal touch in creative works. He believes that poetry, writing, and other forms of art are deeply rooted in personal perspectives, which AI struggles to replicate.

Finally, Fincher briefly touched on a canned World War Z sequel project, mentioning that it was in the vein of “The Last of Us” and would have explored similar themes as the video game. The original book wasn’t a strict blueprint for the adaptation, but there’s ongoing talk about revisiting the project.

“The Killer” hits UK cinemas in November before coming to Netflix, offering viewers a darkly humorous and revenge-driven experience from the master of macabre storytelling.



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