Call Me By Your Name could’ve been a lot more explicit…
The award-winning film follows the love story between Elio (Timothée Chalet) and Oliver (Armie Hammer), an American academic who comes to stay at his family’s home in Italy during the summer of 1983, and has been met with almost universal acclaim.
But script writer James Ivory, who became the oldest ever Oscar winner ever when he picked up the Best Adapted Screenplay for the celebrated gay love story, isn’t entirely happy with director Luca Guadagnino’s finished product.
“When Luca says he never thought of putting nudity in, that is totally untrue,” James told The Guardian, who explained that Timothée and Armie both had clauses in their contracts against full-frontal nudity.
“He sat in this very room where I am sitting now, talking about how he would do it, so when he says that it was a conscious aesthetic decision not to – well, that’s just bullshit.
“When people are wandering around before or after making love, and they’re decorously covered with sheets, it’s always seemed phoney to me. I never liked doing that. And I don’t do it, as you know.”
Referring to a scene in his 1987 film Maurice, based on EM Forster’s gay love story of the same name, he recalls how “the two guys have had sex and they get up and you certainly see everything there is to be seen.
“To me, that’s a more natural way of doing things than to hide them, or to do what Luca did, which is to pan the camera out of the window toward some trees.”
James also revealed that he originally wrote scenes in which Elio’s parents made reference to the beginning of the AIDS crisis, but he isn’t quite so bothered that they were cut from the finished product.
“There was some timidity on the part of the mother regarding this new and terrible disease everyone was hearing about,” he said.
“I wrote two scenes where the parents discuss that. It didn’t matter to me that they were dropped. They didn’t do anything terrible important.”
Despite contradictory reports over whether a follow-up to the critically-acclaimed film would come to fruition, director Luca Guadagnino has confirmed that it will indeed be happening, and even shared some information on the plot.
“I’m already conceiving the story with [author] André Aciman, and it’s gonna happen five or six years afterwards, almost in 1990,” he told USA Today from the Oscars red carpet on Sunday night. ”It’s gonna be a new movie, a different tone.”
Fans will be able to breathe a sigh of relief, as Luca also confirmed that the film will “of course” reunite stars Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer as Elio and Oliver once again – but it won’t be set ‘Somewhere in Northern Italy’ like the original.
“They’re gonna go around the world,” he added.
Luca initially teased us with a sequel last year when he told Gay Times: “Maybe in time we’ll be able to tell more stories about these people. I’ve spoken to André about that and, yeah, André is up for it.”
Back in January, Luca elaborated that a sequel would likely deal with the effects of the AIDS crisis – a point of contention among some critics, as the original failed to mention the disease at all, despite being set in the 1980s.
He also suggested that there could be a series of films all set in the same universe.
But not everyone from the Call Me By Your Name team is so sure about the potential for a sequel.
After winning the BAFTA for Best Adapted Screenplay last month, the film’s screenwriter James Ivory cast doubt on a continuation of Elio and Oliver’s story, as he argued it’s “not possible” to make Timothée Chalamet look older.
“No one has contacted me,” he added. “You have to think, ‘Why does André Aciman think about that?’ It’s his creation. No one seems to know how he feels about it.”
Meanwhile, the film took home only one award at the Oscars on Sunday night – Best Adapted Screenplay – but it was enough to make history, as screenwriter James became the oldest person ever to win an Oscar.