Interview Of Luc Besson About The Fifth Element
In fact, the movie's a comedy. During filming the actors were "pushing the envelope" all over the place : They were all funny and wanted to perform, to have fun with their respective characters. As soon as Bruce Willis, Chris Tucker or Milla Jovovich warmed up, the performances, and I would even say the lunacy, could begin. Ruby Rhod's (Chris Tucker) first scene is a scene worthy of a musical!
We rehearsed a lot to learn positions, have a working basis and not waste time while shooting because of the extremely important technical imperatives. Rehearsals were conducted without dialogue to keep things at a distance and as soon as the actors were "hot", I would stop. You have to remove a little dust, but not go so far that you risk losing all spontaneity.
There's action but it isn't an "action movie". If I were to define "The Fifth Element", I'd say it was 1/3 "Brazil", 1/3 "Star Wars" and 1/3 Jacques Tati! After seeing the film, Gary Oldman said to me, "It's "Star Wars" on acid!".