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The Best of Tilda Swinton’s Reddit AMA

The Best of Tilda Swinton’s Reddit AMA


In addition to still-life model at MoMA and dance leader at Ebertfest, Tilda Swinton has now added “Redditeer” to her resume. She was on hand Monday for an AMA to promote Snowpiercer and put on her signature arty charm, earning a few nicknames (T-Swinny), declaring her love of Alt-J and revealing she’s actually a clone of David Bowie in the process. Here’s a few of some her best answers:

Have you ever considered changing your name (or at least how it appears in print) to the tilde symbol “~” a la Prince?

Frankly no, but since you mention it.. ~ xo

(Reddit also had some fun with this, calling her “~Swinton”, “Approximately Swinton”, “On the Order of Swinton”, “Deviantart user Swinton” and “Not Swinton”)

The Grand Budapest Hotel and Only Lovers Left Alive both seem like they must have been very fun movies to work on, was that the case?

Working with both Jim Jarmusch and Wes Anderson is like the summer camp of dreams.. with significant themic differences.. Wes Camp means all staying in a big house together and eating round one big table every night, none of that trailer stuff that big movies do, which tends to divide people out and make for lonely days (so I hear).. Jim Camp is rock n’ roll camp, nocturnal, super mellow, like the endless morning after a crash-out sleep-over when noone really wants to go home.

How many times have you walked in on George Clooney wearing the Batsuit?

I’m holding onto a large stash of Polaroids.

I have a theory that you’re a clone of David Bowie created right around the Modern Love era so that he could continue being a musician as well as star in more movies. So far I’ve discovered no evidence to the contrary. Do you have any opinion on that?

The laboratory gave me strict instructions to issue no comment

What’s an underappreciated movie that you’ve been in that you would like more people to see?

Making films is such a long drawn out business.. there is the preparation (after the pre-preparation.. which can be years) and then we shoot, cut and look for distribution. I made a film with Erick Zonca called Julia of which I am extremely proud: in the United States it had a very small release by a great little and passionate distribution company called Magnolia.. but there was only so wide they could release it.. PLEASE look for that one.. it is something else.. and I LOVE it.

I wanted to know if you are into the comedy scene? Do you go to any shows? Do you have any favorite comedians current or past?


(Redditors also tried to get Chris Hardwick on the case of inviting her to appear on @Midnight)

Loved your performance as the Witch from Narnia, definitely a villain not to be reckoned with. Any chance we will see you reprise your role on any future sequels??

I have always hoped that there would be the chance to make The Magician’s Nephew, the prequel to The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – such a fantastic story.. the creation of Narnia and the Witch driving a coach and four horses around Victorian London at breakneck speed.. but no word as yet.. let’s cross our fingers.

Yo girl. I was curious, if you hadn’t become an actress, what do you think you may have ended up doing for a living?

Professional gambler.

What’s the best song you’ve heard in the last week? 

“Hunger of the Pine” by alt-J

Was We Need to Talk About Kevin anywhere near as intense to film as it was to watch? 

I reckon it’s way more intense for you guys who saw the film straight up in the theater than for us group of chums who made it. We got to do scary moves and then break for lunch, play a game of cards and think of other things – all spread over several weeks.

Had you seen any of Bong Joon-Ho’s movies before working on Snowpiercer? What was it like working with him and Song Kang-ho? Would you like to work with Bong Joon-Ho again if given the chance?

I was a MASSIVE fan of Bong Joon Ho’s before I met him: Memories of Murder, The Host, Mother and even his first film Barking Dogs Never Bite; some of my favourite films of the last fifteen years. And Song Kang Ho is a great, proper film star in the best sense. I would work with them on anything we could dream up together.

You’re hardly recognizable in Snowpiercer and The Grand Budapest Hotel. Do you play a role in the appearance of your characters?

The whole business of dressing up and playing is the greatest of fun for me. Every time, it doesn’t have to be something as extreme or pantomime ridiculous as Mason in Snowpiercer or intricate as the extraordinary prosthetics for GBH. Even when working out the look of someone pretty regular like the woman in I Am Love or Kevin. The look is, in a pretty big way, where I mainly do my work. Once we start shooting, then: I play.

How do you choose your projects?

I first started making films with Derek Jarman in England in the 1980’s. We were very close friends and we made seven films together over the nine years before he died in 1994. I learned very early on that filmmaking is amongst the most fun things that can be done in a group, in the cold and the rain in the middle of the night when the food has run out. So ever since then, I have chosen the people first above every other element. Life is too short to be working alongside people you don’t like A LOT for years on end.

Throughout your career you’ve played quite a few very strong female roles. And this power bleeds through into stationary photoshoots. What advice would you give to young women of today to make them feel more empowered?

Make sure you know that you know best for yourself. And that being happy and at ease is not too much to ask.