Arising, in part, from reports of precarious incidents between paparazzi and actor Scarlett Johansson, numerous local Taiwanese reporting rumors have surfaced claiming the imminent and premature withdrawal of cast and crew of Luc Besson’s (The Fifth Element, Transporter 2) Lucy, which is currently filming in the country’s capital. Yet amid the whirlwind of speculation, two seemingly reliable sources, the Taipei Film Commission and EuropaCorp, deny any such developments, claiming that despite the unfortunate altercations between paparazzi and filmmakers, the film’s original shooting schedule will remain intact.
The film, which is the largest movie project to be shot in Taiwan since Life of Pi, is reportedly of peak interest among the Taiwanese public. In fact, Variety reports that the rumor of Lucy’s compromised shooting schedule reached the computer screens of over 200,000 people domestically. Publications making such sensationalist claims include Dark Horizons and Focus Taiwan News Channel.
And though both the TFC and EuropaCorp concede the validity of reports of the French director’s frustration with paparazzi taking pictures of Johansson in costume, as well as slamming into a moving vehicle in which the actor was traveling, both sources made statements denying any efforts by the production to cease filming. An anonymous representative of TFC claims, “The shoot is going very well. Every setup is on schedule… It will complete its full 11 days here,” and EuropaCorp’s Christophe Lambert announced publicly to Variety that “the filming of Lucy in Taipei is going forward as planned and will wrap next Monday.”
Lucy concerns a drug transporter (played by Johansson) who attains superhuman abilities after the narcotics that she is trafficking accidentally enter into her bloodstream. EuropaCorp, Besson’s newly formed French production company, is producing the film, with Universal distributing it everywhere except France, Benelux and China.