Guillermo del Toro hopes to start filming Nightmare Alley again in the fall. The director also estimates that they have about 45% of the upcoming movie finished. Fans of the director have been waiting for his follow up to The Shape of Water, but with things going the way they’re going, the wait might be a little bit longer than originally anticipated. As for when things will get back to normal, that is unclear, though del Toro seems to sum it up best: “I don’t think we can go back to what we consider the old normal. Everything will be a little altered.”
The entertainment industry, for the most part, has been shut down since the middle of March. Movie theaters are still closed and are aiming to reopen at the end of the month after originally planning to open by now. James Cameron was able to successfully get Avatar 2 back on track in New Zealand and Marvel Studios is attempting to restart production on Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings later this month in Australia. As for Nightmare Alley, Guillermo del Toro and crew decided to pull their own plug. He explains.
“We stopped the shoot a week before [the industry shut down]. We reacted super-fast, we proposed the studio to stop as opposed to being asked to stop. That saved us. Nobody to my knowledge in the cast or the crew got [sick]. We were roughly 45 percent in. We were literally in the middle of a great scene. We went to lunch and talked to the studio and when we came back we said, ‘Everybody leave your tools and leave now.'”
Guillermo del Toro added that he “hopes to restart production on Nightmare Alley this fall,” and knows that a lot can happen between now and then. He says, “Fingers crossed. You never know.” When things do get back to some form of normalcy, del Toro has spent some of his free time to create 80-page safety documents for use on the sets of Nightmare Alley and Pinocchio.
In addition to creating safety documents, Guillermo del Toro has been able to do some editing on Nightmare Alley and ADR work on Pinocchio. For the live-action movie, it was pretty simple to stop production and have everybody go home in order to prepare for things to start back up again. But, the stop-motion animation project makes things a little bit more difficult in terms of social distancing when work goes back to normal. Del Toro had this to say.
“In stop-motion, you have many sets nearby one another in a warehouse like space. You can have 10 sets in one space. We had to create a protocol where we now space the sets a certain number of feet. We created different shifts so no one is exposed. In this moment, security is paramount. Health, safety is the number one concert. We got to get used to it.”
If all of that wasn’t enough, Guillermo del Toro also recently talked about his desire to adapt H.P. Lovecraft’s horror classic At the Mountains of Madness. He has talked about wanting to make the movie for years now and has vowed to keep his commitment, though it’s unclear if he’ll get the chance. For now, he’s focused on finishing Nightmare Alley and Pinocchio. The interview with del Toro was originally conducted by Indie Wire.