Werner Herzog reveals why he signed on for The Mandalorian


Werner Herzog explains what made him take a role in the upcoming Star Wars live action series The Mandalorian, and it’s everything you would expect.

If you’re ever surprised to see iconic German filmmaker Werner Herzog appear in some crazy Hollywood action movie or guest starring role in a popular television series, chances are it isn’t because he liked the script, or, in the case of The Mandalorian, is a fan of Star Wars. It’s probably because he needs funding for one of his own projects.

“The only thing I have not done so far [to make money for movies] is bank robbery,” joked Herzog in an interview with Vanity Fair. And as far as popular culture goes, he has a very vague idea of many quotable, household name movies. When asked about Star Wars or Terminator, he’s never seen them and has no idea what they’re even about.

What is ironic about Herzog’s lack of interest in Hollywood films and popular culture, is that the rights for his latest project were stolen right out from under people like Steven Spielberg and Ryan Gosling. Of course, where they would likely have made something a touch more widely consumable, Herzog takes it and goes full Herzog.

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The film is called Family Romance, LLC and is based on a real Japanese company that provides emotional connection services. They will hire out people to fill specific emotional roles based on need; say if a single mother needed a father figure for her children. It’s strange and unique, but also completely relatable and modern.

“The existential solitudes in our generation are evident with aging populations and quasi-human connections on social media—which are all inflated on a level that is not completely what a human contact should be,” explained Herzog to Vanity Fair. Despite the fact that everyone needs real human, emotional connection, it is often impossible to find someone to provide that connection.

Herzog sneaked in while Spielberg and others were writing up huge legal contracts and simply approached the owner of this property with his own minimalist contract. Family Romance, LLC is made in classic Herzogian style, filmed in Japan with Japanese speaking non-actors allowed to improvise around an incomplete script.

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With the money he made appearing in The Mandalorian, he was able to finance his micro-budget film and make something far more interesting and unique than anyone in Hollywood would ever be allowed to make, if they even could have thought of it in the first place.

(Source: Vanity Fair)