Luca Guadagnino is sitting in a hotel in Beverly Hills, but his mind is back in Italy.The 46-year-old director is doing press duties for Call Me By Your Name, his rapturous romance about star-crossed lovers falling for each other over one memorable, wistful summer. A day in the life of the Newbie Emissary Orochi-kun (Noon ~ Evening) 38. A day in the life of the Newbie Emissary Orochi-kun (Morning ~ Noon) 37. Counter Stop, Counter Stop, Counter Stop (Firebird) 7. A day in the life of the Newbie Emissary Orochi-kun (Midnight) (Firebird) 41. The path towards becoming a Spellsword (Firebird) 32. A day in the life of the Newbie Emissary Orochi-kun (Late Night) (Firebird) 40.
Chalamet, who had landed a small role in Interstellar and scene-stealing turns in indies such as Miss Stevens, was suggested by the actor's agent. He was restless, and yet he was a boy."But that first meeting was four years ago – back when Chalamet was 17 and, like Guadagnino, learning that films can take forever to get off the ground. and it didn't." But he refused to leave a project that spoke so deeply to him.That's why I came to this idea that this was the last chapter of a possible trilogy." He smiles, like he's been found out."I was trying to articulate a way to run away from the not-nice feeling that I'm repeating myself.But then when you say yes, you get invested in the movie a hundred percent."And though he claims he had no intention of spearheading the movie until he was asked, Call Me By Your Name feels so in tune with his two previous films (the carnal and romantic exploits of characters, sumptuous locales, unlikely lovers undone circumstance and fate) that some have billed it as the final chapter of Guadagnino's "Desire trilogy" – a moniker that the filmmaker is a little sheepish about."They wanted to have a quote for the press book in Sundance," where the film premiered, he explains. And then it came to my mind that, in fact, the last three movies I made were all, in a way, different declarations of the concept of desire.(It hits theaters on November 24th.) And when he's asked if he's ever had a comparably whirlwind, sun-splashed fling – one that may have helped inspire his sensual, startling love story – you get the sense that the filmmaker has momentarily left the room. "I haven't got that experience," says Guadagnino after a moment. I know the smell of that feeling, which is a summery smell – the smell of the night, where you can't sleep because you are restless."Set in gorgeous Northern Italy during the summer of 1983, Call Me By Your Name follows a talented, sensitive 17-year-old named Elio (Chalamet) who is thunderstruck by Oliver (Hammer), the dashing, charismatic but slightly guarded 24-year-old who moves into his villa to study with Elio's decorated scholar father Lyle (Michael Stuhlbarg).He is now somewhere back in his native country, imagining the sound of lapping waves and cicadas, maybe a light breeze blowing as dusk sets. Over a series of tranquil, humid days and nights the teenager tries resisting his slowly building feelings for this stranger, who seems too occupied with the local female beauties to notice."He said, ‘This young man, I just signed him – you should meet him because he has the qualities to be Elio,'" recalls Guadagnino. "It looked like perhaps it was going to come together that summer ... "It was complex, layered, contradictory, real and relatable – it was an awesome and accurate lens into what a young person experiences."Hammer's wait was even longer."I met Luca about seven years ago and had one of the best meetings I've ever had," he says.The face-to-face wasn't about any particular project – it was just to get to know one another."I went over to his place, and we sat for hours, discussing literature and art and movies ... I walked out and thought, ' I fucking nailed that.' Then I didn't hear anything from him for, like, six-and-a-half years. "And says, ‘I have a script, and I'd love for you to be in it.'"By 2016, Guadagnino had made his I Am Love follow-up, the sultry English-language thriller A Bigger Splash; after the producers suggested he take the reins – at that point, who knew the material better than he did?