4 March 1941 |
Peterborough, Northamptonshire, England
|Occupation||Director, screenwriter, producer|
|Years active||1976 â€“ present|
I don't know really. I've always been interested in the small picture instead of the big one, and I've always been interested in relationship pictures.
Every time I do one I feel like I've never really quite learned anything. I always find that when I'm making a film, I find it a little bit like I'm doing it for the first time.
The challenge, really, on any new film is to try to avoid that and achieve a few moments that aren't cliche.
I've always been interested in films where you can identify with the actors. Where you can be in their shoes and therefore be more involved if they're people that you recognize.
What I think is interesting is that the more you do, you have to invent a book of rules of what you can do and what you can't do. And the very real danger is that if your book of rules becomes a book of cliches.
I was watching Monster's Ball, which is a fabulous movie. It's just a little gem: beautifully shot, and shot in a way I never would have done. It made me feel very old, really, because it wasn't eccentric for its own sake, it was just very original.
Well, I think just the fact that you are making your first film is a huge step.
I was speaking to Ridley Scott the other day and he makes a film every 18 months. He's amazing really.
I feel a little schizophrenic because my life is so totally different from here, obviously. And the French values are so different from American values.
And I think you understand a little bit more why she falls for him. In a way, watching the French do anything is a little more fun because their gestures are different. And in that way, they make everything interesting.
I think you get better at staring into space. Especially living in the South of France.
Their every instinct – and I have to say this is without exception – is to iron out the bumps, and It's always the bumps that are the most interesting stuff.
So on my screenplay, on the left-hand side of the page, I will put all the ideas that refer to the scene next to it so I have some sort of pictorial reference.
If you are prepared to make a fool of yourself for them then you usually get that back. I think that there are points where you become so close to an actor, you know them so well, almost as well or better than their spouse. You have to know them, warts and all.
Foxes was a movie that didn't do a lot of business but it didn't do too badly critically and eventually they offered me other things. The interesting thing was that next I tried a film called Star Man, which Michael Douglas was producing.
Obviously, in dealing with a relationship, sexuality has to be involved, and jealousy and emotions like that. And I don't know, I've always been intrigued by those emotions.