For a seasoned Hollywood vet like Mark Ruffalo, you’d think his directorial debut would be a cinch.
“My first day I came to my trailer, walked through the door, and literally had a panic attack,” he said of his start on Sympathy for Delicious, out on DVD and Blu-ray Disc Aug. 23rd. “Who did I think I was? I told myself to just act like I knew what I was doing.”
It may have been an understandable reaction considering the subject material. Based on the real-life experiences of Christopher Thornton (Welcome to California, Pretty Persuasion), living as a paraplegic in the world of faith healing, Sympathy follows Thornton as a DJ who’s gifted with the power to heal — everyone but himself.
“No matter how depressing it got, which it did many times, there was something worth staying for,” Ruffalo said.
Thornton, who considers Ruffalo his best friend, gave Ruffalo’s work a big thumbs up, especially considering the amount of challenges involved with the shoot.
“What was very difficult was we had to shoot the film in 23 days,” he said. “The exhaustion was the hardest part.”
Thornton said Ruffalo handled the religious undertones of the film well, treating it respectfully.
“He’s a brilliant director in that sense,” said Thornton, who also wrote the script. “It’s not a religious movie, it just has religious people in it. I wanted it to be as truthful as it could be.”
Ruffalo would like to test his directing chops again, but “not both [acting and directing] at the same time,” he said smiling.
The film also stars Ruffalo, Juliette Lewis, Orlando Bloom and Laura Linney, and for the home entertainment release Maya includes a behind-the-story featurette with Ruffalo and Thornton, an audio commentary with Bloom and Ruffalo, and deleted scenes. The Blu-ray also includes a photo gallery. (Source)