In Zoom, three characters find their lives inconveniently tumbling into one another’s when a frustrated sex doll factory worker by day and graphic novelist by night (Alison Pill) takes out her exasperation on the handsome filmmaker whose life she’s drawing (Bernal).
He, in turn, is directing his pet project: an art house flick starring a model (Mariana Ximenes) who really wants to be a writer and is penning a novel… about a frustrated graphic novelist.
In a Daily Beast exclusive clip, Bernal’s lothario director suffers when Pill’s Emma exorcises her personal frustrations by drawing away his penis. Naturally, he goes shopping for a new prosthetic piece to pack, sheepishly seeking salvation in a sex shop—all conveyed in gorgeous hand-drawn animation. (Watch it below.)
The stacked story was the brainchild of up-and-coming Brazilian helmer Pedro Morelli (Entre Nos), who blends live-action scenes with hand drawn rotoscoped animation into his pop art fantasy sophomore feature and English language debut. Behind the scenes, Zoom was also a product of artists shaping one another’s lives: Morelli, 28, is the son of filmmaker Paolo Morelli, and after attending film school began apprenticing under his dad's longtime pal—Oscar-nominated filmmaker Fernando Meirelles (City of God, The Constant Gardener).
“[Pedro] came up with a brilliant concept, with one character telling a story and another character telling another story, and so on,” praised Meirelles, who came aboard as Zoom’s executive producer. “He’s a very clever guy and very creative, with lots of ideas.”
It doesn’t hurt that Meirelles has known Morelli since he was born. “I went to architecture school with his father, Paolo, and we’ve been partners and friends since,” Meirelles explained. “I held Pedro when he was born! So he’s really a part of the family.” The younger Morelli got his first gig on Meirelles’ Blindness before embarking on his own directing career with 2013’s festival award-winner Entre Nos. Blindness producer Niv Fichman (Hobo With A Shotgun, The Saddest Music In The World), came aboard to produce Zoom, Morelli’s second film.
It was Meirelles, who’s currently directing a Bizet opera in the Amazon ahead of next year’s Rio 2016 opening ceremony, who suggested Morelli cast his Blindness star Bernal. “Gael is very cool, and that’s what he does—he does big films and also indie films. That’s the character, a guy who makes a lot of money with studio films but wants to do these very personal projects. He was perfect.”