Marriage Story Adam Driver Noah Baumbach

Marriage Story director Noah Baumbach says the film’s lead actor, Adam Driver, still has new ideas about their past collaborations.

Baumbach said in a Q&A Thursday night at the Vista Theatre in Los Angeles that Driver describes their four films together “an ongoing conversation.”

“Adam still talks to me about stuff we did two movies back, like While We’re Young. He’s like, ‘I think I now know how to do this scene. I was thinking about it the other day and what I should’ve done was…’”

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Baumbach loves it, he said. “What’s so thrilling about working with him is that within a moment or a scene, he’s always looking for something that feels even more authentic or that triggers/activates him.”

Knowing the people he’s writing for—from Adam Driver to Scarlett Johansson to Laura Dern, all of whom he approached early on about the project—is a key component of Baumbach’s writing process.

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“It’s important to know these people who are going to play these parts,” Baumbach said. “When I was writing, it worked as inspiration, but it also informed the scenes. You write: The lawyer sashays across the room and says, ‘Sorry I look so schleppy.’ Knowing it’s Laura Dern, suddenly that’s a great line. It’s not a great line on its own.”

Noah Baumbach‘s Marriage Story is currently in theaters and premieres on Netflix on Dec. 6.