Coffee and Cigarettes: Somewhere in California (also known as Coffee and Cigarettes III) is a 1993 black-and-white short film directed by writer/director Jim Jarmusch shot in Northern California. The film consists primarily of a conversation between Tom Waits and Iggy Pop in a coffee shop. The film would later be included in the feature-length Coffee and Cigarettes released in 2003.
The film won the Golden Palm at the 1993 Cannes Film Festival as best “Short Film”. We love the deadpan humour and the awkward dialogue. It gets better with age.
“Tom was exhausted. We had just shot a video the day before for “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up” and he had been doing a lot of press. He was kind of in a surly mood as he is sometimes, but he’s also very warm. He came in late that morning – I had given him the script the night before – and I was with Iggy. Tom threw the script down on the table and said, “Well, you know, you said this was going to be funny, Jim. Maybe you better just circle the jokes ’cause I don’t see them”. He looked at poor Iggy and said, “What do you think Iggy?” Iggy said, “I think I’m gonna go get some coffee and let you guys talk.” So I calmed Tom down. I knew it was just early in the morning and Tom was in a bad mood. His attitude changed completely, but I wanted him to keep some of that paranoid surliness in the script. We worked with that and kept it in his character. If he had been in a really good mood, I don’t think the film would have been as funny.””
– Jim Jarmusch