Persepolis | EW.com

Movies

The winner of this year’s Jury Prize at Cannes, Persepolis is an adaptation of Marjane Satrapi’s best-selling graphic memoir about her experiences growing up in Iran during the Islamic revolution. Animated in vivid black and white, the film explores what it means to be Iranian when you’ve spent half your life abroad. (Satrapi’s parents sent her to the French lycée of Vienna when she was a teenager). ”Listen, from the beginning, I thought it was the worst idea in the world to adapt your book into a movie — especially if you have never directed before,” says Satrapi, 37, in her French-accented English. ”But I had the possibility of doing something new, exactly the way I wanted, with my best friend [Vincent Paronnaud]. So I said, ‘Let’s try it.”’

Landing what she calls her ”dream cast” proved surprisingly simple. ”These great actors all said ‘Yeah, we want to work with you!”’ Satrapi marvels. Trickier was adjusting to her role as ringleader of a 100-person production team. ”Before, I always worked alone,” she says. So for the movie, ”having to [deal with all those] people every day was hard.” But eventually, she adjusted, and funnily enough: ”I became extremely happy to work with them the day they all left, one after the other.”