Do not be fooled by its title: the film Burning Man, currently screening at the Toronto Film Festival, has absolutely nothing to do with the popular festival. “I didn’t even know about all that,” says Burning Man’s star, Matthew Goode. It involves a lot of sun and costumes and time spent out in the northern Nevada desert, EW told him. “I don’t think all that is for me,” he laughs. “Look at this English skin!”
Well, we certainly get an eyeful in this movie! Burning Man, directed by Jonathan Teplizky, chronicles a man grieving for his wife after she dies from cancer. His suffering leads him down some self-destructive paths, many of which involves his relations with different women. “The very first shot of the movie is my bare ass starring back at the audience,” laughs Goode, who watched the film again during its Toronto premiere.
“It was not my most comfortable experience.” But, the 33-year-old actor – best known for his work in Match Point, Leap Year, and Chasing Liberty – says, “I’m not going to downplay it, it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do…and I think it’s the best film I’ve been in. Subjectively, it’s the one I’ve been in the most and I don’t think I messed it up.”
Goode currently is filming Stoker in Nashville with Nicole Kidman and Mia Wasikowska for director Park Chan-wook (Oldboy). “I’m lucky Colin Firth dropped out,” he says (they made the character younger when Goode came aboard). “I spoke to [Firth] the other day” – both were in A Single Man – “and he was saying, ‘I’m so annoyed I can’t do that film.’ And I’m like, ‘You’ve got to give me one!’”
As for meeting Nicole Kidman? “She’s lovely,” says Goode. “It’s good, because I’m going to do naughty stuff with her in this film…it will be just another scene my other half [longtime girlfriend Sophie Dymoke] is going to have to watch and go, ‘Oh God. Another one.’”