In the above too brief podcast, the Coens give some insight into their working process.
"I just wanted the characters to behave in as honest a way as possible."
That makes sense but the following surprised me
- They don't outline
- They don't carry out character specific passes to make sure they are distinct from each other
- They don't research and write out of complete ignorance
Someone said the Coens had a tendency for deus ex machina endings and them not outlining would explain that but I don't know if that's true and I have to re-watch the films with that comment in mind. What it does mean is that it takes them ages to write a script because they have to stop to think of what happens next.
Maybe I do carry out too many passes but you'd have to take the highlighter pen away from my cold dead hand before I give up character specific passes.
I've always thought anyone who didn't research was just lazy but now I think over-research might be a bigger a problem as it doesn't seem like procrastination. Each to their own but for me a balance between the two makes more sense. A quick check on your facts or trying to find interesting settings which aren't over-used isn't going to do any harm.