Patrick Stewart among stars in new Quebec film project

There is a new Quebec film team launching their first feature film starring Sir Patrick Stewart, called ‘CODA’.

Stewart plays Henry Cole, a classical concert pianist haunted by his past and suffering from stage fright.

“I don’t know what’s happening to me,” his character says early in the film.

Stewart spoke to CTV News about the role.

“He was a great artist with a bright future, but suffered a tragedy in his life, and it disrupted his confidence and the connection to his art disappeared,” he said.

Patrick Stewart in the movie ‘Coda’, shot at Place des Arts in Montreal. Sabrina Rhéaume (Internati Film Option)

Screenwriter Louis Godbout has a Philosophy Ph.D. and drew on that experience to create the story of human struggle.

“When we think about things, consciousness creeps in and breaks your trust and makes life difficult for you,” Godbout said. Director Claude Lalonde said that during the character’s difficult times, there is also teaching and self-awareness.

“When someone suffers, you can finally find peace in life in difficult times; everyone goes through it,” he said. “The human condition is about suffering and finding joy.”

The film also examines the impact of aging, more specifically: aging in the viewer.

It’s something Stewart, who started acting in the 1960s, is familiar with.

“When I was young and acting, I was reckless and so believed in myself!” he said. “But over time, that’s not the case.”

In the film, Katie Holmes also stars as Helen Morrison, a former pianist who helps the struggling performer.

Patrick Stewart among stars in new Quebec film projectSir Patrick Stewart and Katie Holmes in ‘Coda’, a film shot in Montreal. SOURCE: Sabrina Rhéaume (Internati Film Option)

Giancarlo Esposito plays the artist’s manager and confidante.

Patrick Stewart among stars in new Quebec film projectGiancarlo Esposito and Sir Patrick Stewart in ‘Coda’, a film shot in Montreal. SOURCE: Sabrina Rhéaume (Internati Film Option)

It was a pleasant and unexpected joy for the local production crew to have major industry heavyweights on the project.

“We were all first!” said Godbout. “I was a screenwriter for the first time, he’s (Lalonde)’s first time as a director, so we didn’t know what was going to happen. A woman from Los Angeles agreed to cast it, an ex-pat from Montreal, and when we got the list of potential stars, we couldn’t believe it!”

CODA hits Quebec theaters on June 3.

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