During shooting, Matthias Schoenaerts only slept two hours each night and was entirely committed to his character's painful state. Schoenaerts admitted that while getting deep into his role, he did "crazy things" such as "stopping with sleeping" and that he ended up in hospital in intensive care a couple of times.
The film came to life after director Alice Winocour found herself interested in war photographers who talked about the difficult return to normal life, after having seen death and the horrors of combat. One thing led to another and she decided to meet with soldiers coming home from Afghanistan, they talked about their fears, their anxiety, their mental distress and their inner violence. Vincent's character was born from all these encounters. Winocour also told that her inspirations for the film were the images of photographers Gregory Crewdson and Philip-Lorca diCorcia. Each, in their own way, create a fusion between horror film and documentary tradition.
On September 15, 2016, Deadline reported that Taylor Sheridan has been set by Sony Pictures and Escape Artists to script the American remake of "Disorder". Escape Artists' Todd Black, Jason Blumenthal, Steve Tisch and Tony Shaw will produce the remake and David Beaubaire is overseeing it for the studio. No director has been set yet.
The French title, "Maryland", has nothing to do with the American state, it's a fictitious villa in the South of France where the film takes place. Alice Winocour told that she decided to call the villa like that because "For French people, 'Maryland' means the opposite of wonderland--something seedy. I like that you're entering this very specific world of the house, which is shady."
Director Alice Winocour wrote the film for Matthias Schoenaerts. They worked on this project together for two years. Winocour told that Schoenaerts has an animalistic side that felt perfect for the character, she wanted to film him like men film women, like an object of desire, even though his character has more depth than that. He also had to play a character with a fragile state.
When Alice Winocour was editing the film, her editor, Julien Lacheray, received a message saying, "Are you in the street? Go back home. There's a problem", and it was the Charlie Hebdo attack. Then it was amazing to Winocour when she was going out of the editing room, she was seeing military with guns in the street, she felt really that the nightmare had come for real. Winocour's little brother was in the Bataclan attack and he survived. It was also something really strange that her brother became like the character Vincent, suffering from PTSD himself. Winocour told that it was really weird having worked for such a long time on this subject and suddenly to have her little brother experiencing something like that.
Alice Winocour told that she felt so close to the character because she experienced PTSD after she gave birth to her daughter, and both mother and baby almost died - and she thinks that's why she felt so close to the soldiers, even though she's never been to Afghanistan. Winocour had a disease and both her and her baby were really close to death. When she woke up from the delivery she didn't know where she was because her daughter was not with her, and she spent 10 days without seeing the baby, so she didn't know for a couple of hours if she was dead or alive, and all she could hear was the sound of machines. Winocour thinks that's a reason why her film has an electronic music soundtrack, that's why the sound is so important in the film.
Matthias Schoenaerts's grandfather was a soldier and PTSD meant a lot to him. On his arm there are dates written down, like tattoos, and the actor and director Alice Winocour worked a lot on that. They knew they had to express his story and so there, for example, a prayer on his chest - the soldier's prayer. Alice Winocour met a lot of soldiers before writing the script and a lot of things are inspired by their testimony. Then Schoenaerts met the soldiers, and on his arm he wrote some dates down because he had seen that on soldiers before, and it's mysterious. He asked if he could write down dates that were important to him, so there were five dates written on him.
Alice Winocour told that she liked the idea that on the French Riviera, which is always represented as beautiful beaches and sun, it should rain constantly. During the shooting, the cast and crew were stuck in the house and there were incredible storms. Sometimes it was even difficult for the sound to record it. All the beaches were damaged because of the storms.
For the costumes, Alice Winocour thought it was very important that Jessie should wear a fabulous gown in the beginning, and then she is a prisoner in a golden prison, she is like frozen. At the beginning, Alice thought that we had to see Jessie as a beautiful creature, and then as the film evolves, she is wearing this jogging and she is not really getting dressed anymore, she becomes herself. Winocour thought a lot about Eyes Wide Shut (1999) - the first scene where we see Nicole Kidman wearing this fabulous dress, with Tom Cruise going to the party, and then you see her on the toilet, this little idea makes her suddenly very human. That's what Winocour imagined for the scene when Jessie is feeding the dog in this fabulous dress, that you see her doing something really super natural and common with this incredible outfit.
The scenes at the "Maryland" villa were shot at the Domaine la Dilecta, in the Cape of Antibes (Cap d'Antibes) in the South of France. The mansion contains 10 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms, a sauna, tennis court, swimming pool and poolhouse gym. Madonna rented the house for the summer in 2011 for 200,000 euros a week.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
Alice Winocour told that some people asked her why don't Vincent and Jessie have sex together. Winocour thinks he is in too bad a condition. In the beginning he is asked: "Do you have any sexual problem?" and he says "No". But the audience can see that when he says it, that he has a problem. It's a strange relationship but they have a little moment together. For Winocour, the watching TV together on the couch is really like the sex scene of the film - they fall asleep together. They can't sleep in the beginning, that's why she is watching TV all the time and he can't sleep either. That they fall asleep shows that they abandon themselves.
Alice Winocour told that one of her inspirations for the film was Beauty And The Beast. Even if Jessie is attracted by Vincent, he scares her. Winocour told that she likes the idea that the one that should protect you, is scaring you and that's how she directed Matthias Schoenaerts. She told him, "You have to look at your hands after the fight as if they were not your hands. Or, it was your hands that had done the job but not you." When he has that look, Winocour told Diane Kruger, "He is ashamed" like in Beauty And The Beast when he has eaten all those things and thinks, "I'm a monster". According to Winocour, Matthias has this monster part in him in the film, he doesn't belong anymore to that world.
There's a scene of a girl on the beach with a big tattoo of scissors. It is only after that scene that the audience sees Vincent's tattoo, spelling out 'chaos', for the first time. Alice Winocour noticed with soldiers that their stories were written on their bodies. Vincent had dates that were written on his arms that were real dates that meant something to Matthias Schoenaerts. There was a very famous soldier's prayer asking for violence, lots of stuff and scars. For Winocour, the girl on the beach could be a girl that Vincent could have liked but then she becomes scary as well.