Where Was Kinds of Kindness Filmed?

‘Kinds of Kindness,’ initially titled ‘And,’ reunited filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos and actor-producer Emma Stone in their third feature film collaboration, fresh off the triumphant success of their critically acclaimed drama, ‘Poor Things.’ An absurdist black comedy like the signature work of its creator, the anthology features compelling performances by Stone, Willem Dafoe, Margaret Qualley, Jesse Plemons, and Hong Chau. Each actor portrays different characters across the film’s unique structure. The narrative is divided into three distinct chapters, each with a particular take that somehow manages to tie the film’s overall theme together.

The first of the stories, titled ‘The Death of R.M.F.,’ follows Robert (Plemons) as he cuts ties with his powerful boss (Dafoe) after being asked to perform an unforgivable act. The second chapter, ‘R.M.F. Is Flying’ explores marriage in crisis as Plemons’ character reunites with his long-missing wife (Stone), only to suspect she might not be who she appears to be. The final chapter, ‘Eats a Sandwich,’ focuses on Emily (Stone) as she embarks on a mysterious quest. This surrealist backdrop of Lanthimos’ arthouse affair raises some intriguing questions on minute production details, such as the whereabouts of its fictional world.

Kinds of Kindness Filming Locations

The entirety of ‘Kinds of Kindness’ was filmed in and around New Orleans in Louisiana. The swift production began on October 24, 2022, and lasted for less than two months before reaching its conclusion on December 16 of the same year. Shooting here marked a deviation from most entries in the filmography of Yorgos Lanthimos, which relied on exotic destinations, heavy set pieces, and post-production edits.

Despite the new territories, the final product retains the authentic backdrops of its auteur’s previous work, successfully hacking the eyes of its viewers into witnessing the on-screen characters in an intimately close manner. As the primary location, the city complemented the minimalist appeal of the comedy film, adding the required atmospheric backdrop to the indie film. Moreover, cinematographer Robbie Ryan’s preference for natural light — including the black-and-white portion — accentuated the eerie and unsettling environment even further.

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans — the largest city and a consolidated county in the southern state of Louisiana — hosted the filming of ‘Kinds of Kindness.’ The deserted alleys and hauntingly beautiful streets add depth to the characteristics of its various quirky personalities. Known for its vibrant culture, historic architecture, and unique landscapes, New Orleans offers a striking setting that matches the contemporary yet surreal aesthetic of the anthology, thanks to some iconic locations, such as the historic French Quarter. Moreover, the essence of superstitions in the screenplay associates itself with New Orleans, given the city’s rich history with syncretism, popularly referred to as Louisiana Voodoo.

The region’s stately mansions and tree-lined streets offered a contrasting setting to the film’s darker themes of identity. Some sequences feature the latter looking at the city’s skyline from his luxurious office to showcase the contrast in economic standings between the characters of Dafoe and Plemons. The crew sought to execute the script on a more urbanized side of the town, eventually arriving at Vue Orleans Observation Deck, situated at 2 Canal Street. Various parks, suburban homes, and motels make appearances.

A key boat chase sequence was shot near South Shore Harbor Marina, located at 6701 Stars and Stripes Boulevard. The multiple drive scenes involving Stone were shot across the city’s suburban neighborhoods and exterior highways. The team also taped a few scenes in Fairmont Drive. Stone’s famous dance routine was shot at a nearby parking lot, supposedly around the industrial region of the city. Marina Inn & Suites Chalmette-New Orleans, located at Paris Road, Chalmette, right outside the city’s entrance, is also used for a critical scene in the movie. The iconic motel also made waves with its appearances in the horror film, ‘The Last Exorcism’ and the Netflix series, ‘Queen of the South.’

Lanthimos’ unique approach involved casting the same actors in different roles across the stories, providing a sense of continuity and unity while making subtle adjustments to their appearances and performances. Though the technique enhances the film’s surreal and multifaceted narrative, it complicates the jobs of the actors’ side. Plemons revealed to Vanity Fair that all his fellow cast members had to undergo extensive rehearsal sessions. Each chapter was filmed consecutively, with each segment taking approximately three weeks to complete, interspersed with short breaks. This rigorous schedule required the crew to remain adaptable and cohesive but ultimately benefited the production of ‘Kinds of Kindness.’

Read More: Where and When Does Poor Things Take Place?