Timothee Chalamet Interview: ‘Call Me By Your Name’
“It’s a pure celebration of love,” proclaims Timothee Chalamet about his new film “Call Me By Your Name” directed by Luca Guadagnino. In our recent webcam interview (watch the exclusive video above), he adds, “Guys with guys; guys with girls; and guys with peaches. It’s simply in the name of celebrating joy and purely celebrating love without an ounce of cynicism. Finding all the joy in love but also treating it with the heartbreak that also often accompanies love.”
In this Sony Pictures Classics release set for November 24, Chalamet plays Elio Perlman, a 17-year-old American living with his family in Italy during 1983. An older American graduate student named Oliver (Armie Hammer) arrives to stay with the family and work alongside Elio’s father Lyle (Michael Stuhlbarg), a Greco-Roman culture professor. Elio and Oliver begin a romantic and then sexual relationship throughout the summer. The movie is written by three-time Oscar-nominated director James Ivory (“A Room with a View,” 1985; “Howard’s End,” 1992; “The Remains of the Day,” 1993).
Chalamet had to learn to speak Italian for certain scenes in the film and also to play the piano convincingly. He already knew French and says, “They’re both romance languages so the syntax and grammatical structure is similar. The conjugations are different and the rules are different. I worked with an Italian tutor for an hour-and-a-half every day leading up to the film.”
As for working opposite Hammer, he reveals, “For a young actor, it’s the biggest gift in the world, particularly with the spontaneous nature of this story and the way these characters play out. A lot of actors of his age and stature could have brought some sort of ego or would have been less generous with their acting and their humanity.”
The 21-year-old actor is having a great year in addition to “Call Me By Your Name.” He is a co-star to Saoirse Ronan in the Greta Gerwig film “Lady Bird” and is in a cast with Christian Bale for the Scott Cooper movie “Hostiles.” Earlier in his career he was a recurring cast member on “Homeland” and has been in the films “Men, Women and Children,” “Interstellar,” and “Love the Coopers.” He received the Breakthrough Actor prize at the Hollywood Film Awards last month. Upcoming projects include “Beautiful Boy” opposite Steve Carell and “A Rainy Day in New York” for director Woody Allen.