Vallée, whose body of work includes the HBO drama Sharp Objects and the acclaimed films C.R.A.Z.Y., Café de Flore, The Young Victoria and Wild, was joined in conversation by cinematographer Yves Bélanger, BFA 84.
Bélanger, a frequent Vallée collaborator, has also contributed to renowned films directed by John Crowley (Brooklyn), Xavier Dolan (Laurence Anyways) and Clint Eastwood (The Mule, Richard Jewell).
The talk, moderated by Tim Southam, a past president of the Directors Guild of Canada, concentrated primarily on technique, as illustrated by clips taken from such Vallée and Bélanger projects as 2013’s Dallas Buyers Club, which netted Academy Awards for actors Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto, 2015’s Demolition, and Big Little Lies, for which Vallée won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing in 2017.
“Understand, we’re not just here to learn from these two gentlemen, but to steal from them,” joked Southam.
The hour-long discussion included a number of process-focused, behind-the-scenes anecdotes for the benefit of the students in attendance. Select cinema students also had the opportunity to meet with Vallée in person at Concordia this week.