Put on the art-house map in 2010 with the emotional Blue Valentine, writer-director Derek Cianfrance is back to tug at the tear ducts with The Place Beyond the Pines. Starring Ryan Gosling, Eva Mendes and Bradley Cooper, the epic story follows their three characters over a period of nearly 20 years. Gosling plays a motorcycle-riding bank robber, Eva the mother of his child and Cooper the cop on Gosling's tail. The story investigates, in part, whether we can ever escape the sins of our fathers – and, as Cianfrance confesses, it also explores his own terror about fatherhood.
"I write from a place of vulnerability and fear. The only way I've learned to write is to write very personal things: my nightmares, my fears, and also my hopes and dreams," he tells Rolling Stone. "I put all of those things on the page, as an instigator for my actors."
The project took nearly five years to complete and 47 days to shoot – mostly in Schenectady, New York. It will open in New York and Los Angeles on March 29th.
Click through as Cianfrance explains these exclusive behind-the-scenes photos, opens up about Gosling's tattoos, reveals his troubles with insurance companies and more.
By KATIE VAN SYCKLE