Toronto Video Interview: Rodrigo Cortés - Director of 'Buried'

September 23, 2010

Rodrigo Cortés

I first saw the buried alive thriller Buried (watch the trailer), starring Ryan Reynolds (and only him) at the Sundance Film Festival in January, where I called it one of my favorite films of the fest. I tried to interview director Rodrigo Cortés at Sundance, but Lionsgate canceled all interviews with him, so now nine months have passed and I finally had the chance to sit down with Cortés for an interview about Buried in Toronto. I've been waiting to talk with him since January, so we covered a lot of different topics, from the concept to shooting in coffins to working with Ryan Reynolds and much more. One of my all-time favorite interviews!

Watch my full interview recorded in Toronto with Buried director Rodrigo Cortés:

Don't forget that while Rodrigo Cortés is the brilliant Spanish filmmaker who actually decided to take on the impossible task of shooting this movie with Ryan Reynolds, the thrilling screenplay behind it was written by Chris Sparling. It's still one of my favorite films of the year and I'm not the only one who enjoyed it - Ethan recently posted a glowing review of Buried as well. I'm so glad I got to chat with Cortés as I had quite a bit to ask and he gave some fantastic answers, which I'm happy that I can in turn share with all of you guys. He is definitely a filmmaker whose career I'll be following closely. Be sure to see Buried in theaters when you can!

Lionsgate is bringing Cortés' Buried to limited theaters tomorrow, with a wider expansion on October 8th.

Find more posts: Hype, Interview, TIFF 10



i havent had the chance to see the movie, but from the reviews ive read and feedback from people, not jus critics. honestly cant wait to see it. its funny cuz prally a few years ago i wouldnt have want to possibly. but a good script is a good script. hopefully reynolds delivers like everyone says he has.

KING on Sep 23, 2010


Yawn Alex. You've gone overkill on Buried.

Anne on Sep 23, 2010


You should tried stop saying "mmjum" when the director is talking. I want to see Buried a lot, love reynolds and original stories.

eru88 on Sep 23, 2010


#2 - No, I haven't. I loved the film, it's one of my favorites of the year, and I'm sorry that you're so closed off to it that you won't give it a chance. I wanted to bring you guys great coverage and interviews like this because there's a lot I love about Buried and I really enjoy diving into conversation with directors like Rodrigo, especially when there is a lot to discuss about this film. #3 - Sorry about that, will try not to next time, it's kind of a subconscious thing, just to show him that I was understanding what he was saying.

Alex Billington on Sep 23, 2010


Relax Alex, I still love ya' to pieces and appreciate your enthusiasm for Buried but your coming on like this year's James Cameron or Brokeback Mountain My point is that you can't seem to let 2 days go by anymore without another update of some sort on the movie and you may be raising the bar on the movie too high. Your build up may make it one of those movies that when those of us who are fans of your article finally see it may end up looking at the movie as a failure because of the unrealistic high expectations.

Anne on Sep 23, 2010


he sounds like peter's boss from family guy.

snitch robinson on Sep 23, 2010


#5 - I don't know, expectations are something you control yourself. I'm just saying to go see it and that it's one of my favorites. I'm trying not to overload the posts, but I've really wanted to support it, and this interview especially was something I was very proud to feature on the site. 🙂

Alex Billington on Sep 24, 2010


Hi Alex: Sorry for my english (I´m spanish, as Rodrigo Cortés). My first comment on your great page. i like it very much, but that doesn´t mean that I sahere all your likings. Each one has his on opiniosns and you don´t have to please everybody. Someone should think you post so many entries of this film, and someothers should like to see more. Someone may doesn´t like to hear your "mmjums" during your interview, and someone wouldnt care at all. Remember: It´s your page. You deceide what to post, when, and how many times. Whatever you´ll do should generate diveres opinions, but not everyone writes them. So, feel free and continue with your excellent work. I love your work, but of course, I don´t share all your points of view. And thanks god for that. Congratulations and go ahead as you like, if you doný want to end completely nuts!

José Manuel on Sep 25, 2010


saw it yesterday on zurich filmfestival and loved it. never thought that cortés could keep up the tension over more than 90 minutes. it`s just an experience you should not miss...waiting on his next project!

Roman on Oct 1, 2010


Hi Alex, brilliant interview! Thank you so much for putting it up and sharing it with us, I really appreciate it. I agree with you, Rodrigo Cortés gives such insightful answers. I love his enthusiasm for his work and he is so genuine and down to earth. I had the real pleasure of meeting Rodrigo Cortés after the q+a discussion at Curzon Cinema (London) the other night, which was so very cool!! I shook hands with him and told him I thought the film was brilliant, he smiled warmly and was really appreciative. He is such a nice guy, stayed for quite abit talking to me. I asked him if he had heard of Ernest Becker's book "The denial of death". And I said to him how his movie addresses alot of the philosophy of the book (the book was awarded the pulitzer prize). He hadn't heard of it, but was genuinely interested, so I wrote the author and title of the book on a piece of paper and gave it to him and he graciously took it, which I thought was really nice of him to do that, again showing what a great guy he is! 🙂 We then spoke abit about how everyone has an unconscious fear of death, and how we're all trying to immortalise ourselves somehow, and we joked how he has done that very thing himself by being a director and making a movie! I said that philosophers and psychologists will be discussing his movie in relation to Ernest Becker no doubt, and how his movie perfectly reflects the ideas. I also told him how unique his film is and how I loved how the entire film was shot in the box from Ryan's perspective. So you really do experience everything he goes through. During Buried you're really taken on a rollercoaster of a ride. It is a brilliant film, and one that has to be experienced in the cinema. It will stay with you long after the credit rolls. Rodrigo Cortés also spoke about how he sees the film as a very very very dark comedy. And how you need those dark comedy moments, so that you're not tightened up by rope the entire time, because the effectiveness of the fear lessens that way, hence the need for the up and down rollercoaster ride of emotions. He also intended for the subtle bureaucratic frustration to show through and how people can relate to that, without needing to be stuck in a box. It was a real pleasure to meet Rodrigo Cortés, he is genuinely a really nice guy, really funny and really clever. I will definately be looking out for movies by this great unique and daring director. Thanks again Alex for putting your great interview up on the web 🙂 I really enjoyed watching it!

Lala on Oct 2, 2010


I went to see this movie at the cinema in Singapore today! It is kinda funny though. From the beginning of the movie until the end all we watching is one guy and one coffin. This is the most budgetless movie ever made where ironman 2 cost millions of dollars to made.. Because u don't really need any character or any stunt or destroy a Ferrari... And so on.. Haha.. Funny man..

Ordinary_guyz on Oct 7, 2010


Great great interview Alex! i think I've seen almost all interviews posted in YouTube about the film but yours was like the sum of it all. Ive learned more about how dedicated Rodrigo is and how brilliant he is in making this awesome film. I now have a higher respect for Ryan Reynolds not only as an actor, but as a person. I am and will always be his fan. He really pulled off the character brilliantly. p.s. i didn't really focus on your mmhmms nor did i mind them. I was actually more intent on listening to what Rodrigo was saying. AND because, Im like that as well i guess 🙂 Thanks for posting this. I'm glad I stumbled upon it.

daphschizo on Feb 20, 2011

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