Michael Stuhlbarg Interview: ‘Call Me By Your Name’
“It’s kind of like this fantastically buoyant, life-affirming summer vacation,” says Michael Stuhlbarg about the Italian-set romantic film “Call Me by Your Name.” He hopes audiences “breathe in the air of Crema and Moscazzano where we shot it, and that they fall in love a little bit, like we all did.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Stuhlbarg above.
Stuhlbarg plays Professor Perlman, an academic living and working with his family in Italy, where his teenage son Elio (Timothee Chalamet) falls in love with Professor Perlman’s visiting student Oliver (Armie Hammer). “I thought he was quite brilliant,” Stuhlbarg explains about his character, “and I didn’t know how I was going to absorb all the knowledge he was meant to have, being a Latin and Greek professor, being a fan and lover of archaeology and art history, and being a compassionate liberal parent present for his son, but articulate and with a very acute sense of humor. I just thought there were all kinds of wonderful things to mine.”
And there may be plenty more to mine. Director Luca Guadagnino has expressed interest in revisiting these characters in a sequel, and Stuhlbarg thinks that’s a “delightful” idea. “He’s in love with these characters, and we were just fortunate enough to play them in this instance,” he says. “I think if he wants to explore their lives in a few years or over a period of time I think it’s a wonderful idea. And it would be unique to anything I would have ever done.”
Also unique is the fact that Stuhlbarg has three films opening this fall, all possible awards contenders: “The Post” and “The Shape of Water” in addition to “Call Me by Your Name.” “I never would have thought or known all three of these would come out around the same time,” he reveals. “I’m the luckiest boy in the world. I got to work with three masters at the height of their powers, and I loved what I got to do. The stories are delightful and important, and honestly I’m grateful, absolutely grateful.”