The action in An Eye for Beauty, the stunning new film from director Denys Arcand, takes place all around the world, from Paris to Toronto to a small town two hours north of Quebec City. But for Éric Bruneau, who stars as an architect having an illicit affair, it wasn’t the scenes in cities that were most breathtaking, but instead the indoor shots that could have been filmed anywhere. “When I saw the movie, I was so impressed with the theatrical way the architecture was portrayed,” he says. “There was this beautiful purity to the spaces—and now I’m trying to keep my own house that way.”
Indeed, the film takes place in some very impressive homes and offices, giving it a luxurious and modern feeling amidst the treachery and deceit that’s otherwise going on. Luckily, since shooting took almost a year, there was also some well-deserved time spent out-of-door as well.
“Denys loves being surrounded by actors, so we all went to the restaurant and played tennis and played golf,” Bruneau recalls. “It was one of the most beautiful shoots I have ever done in my life. He’s so relaxed. He has so much experience that you never stress on set. It was always really relaxed.”
And even after traveling the world and spending nearly 12 months with his character, Bruneau says it was easy enough to say goodbye to the project. “At some point, we shot what we shot and it really is not on my conscience anymore,” he explains. “I really like this movie, but there are so many people who touched the movie after I did. There is someone who is going to edit the movie, there’s someone who is going to put in music, and so on. I learned to let it go once they say it’s a wrap.”
In fact the only thing that might have stuck with him was that desire to keep his own house as clean and well organized as his characters. Kind of. “It’s easy to stash too much stuff everywhere,” Bruneau says with a laugh. “I guess I have to put some stuff in the trash.”