Oliver Stone in Comic-Con, 2016
|Born||William Oliver Stone
September 15, 1946
New York City, U.S.
|Alma mater||New York University (B.F.A.)
|Occupation||Film director, screenwriter, producer, soldier|
|Spouse(s)||Najwa Sarkis (m. 1971; div. 1977)
Elizabeth Burkit Cox (m. 1981; div. 1993)
Sun-jung Jung (m. 1996)
|Awards||Academy Award for Best Director
1989 Born on the Fourth of July
LÃ©gion d’Honneur (2004)
Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay
1978 Midnight Express
It's interesting that when economic times were the hardest, that's when many people embraced liberalism.
I think that many people in history who had power were bumped off because they had power.
I will come out with my interpretation. If I'm wrong, fine. It will become part of the debris of history, part of the give and take.
Fear may very well be a caveman fear of the predator, of the giant lizard chasing them – maybe that's what Steven Spielberg connects with so well in Lost World.
You're not a historian, but most historians will tell you that they make very discrete judgment as to what facts to omit in order to make their book into some shape, some length that can be managed.
I'd love to do historical pictures more, but I don't know if I can.
A woman can be very beautiful and an ideal model and she will photograph incredibly well, but she'll appear in film and it won't work. What works is some fusion of physical beauty with some mental field or whatever you call it. I don't know.
I'd like to do a story about the medieval ages where in every scene you'd sort of feel that you were in the 12th century. That would be great to get that feeling.
Well first of all you have to make the character strong so that people can follow that. And then hopefully that character can integrate with the background of the social situation that people can recognize.
I do believe there are leaders who are like lightning and they come along and they lead. The Lincolns of the world, the Alexander the Greats, they do exist. They have existed.
I've been to war, and it's not easy to kill. It's bloody and messy and totally horrifying, and the consequences are serious.
I would vote for the man who's lived life, who's done different occupations, who's been out in the real world and struggled to make a living, struggled to raise a family, struggled with life as it exists. So I'd vote for experience, honest experience.
When I was a child, I'd see a movie, I took it for what it was, I enjoyed it. And if I believed it I would tend to be more interested in knowing more about it.
One of my fantasies in my life has been that I was granted access with a camera to go back in time, and to film the actual campaign of Alexander crossing into India through Iran and Persia.
But in answer to your question about the conspiracy angle, I think that any historian worth his salt, and this is where I fault Stephen Ambrose and a lot of these guys who attack me – not all of life is a result of conspiracy by any means! Accident occurs alongside conspiracy.
I have the right to interpretation as a dramatist. I research. It's my responsibility to find the research. It's my responsibility to digest it and do the best that I can with it. But at a certain point that responsibility will become an interpretation.
You do the best job you can. You take it step by step. It's hard enough to make a movie. If it works, that's great. If it means something beyond the moment to somebody, they can take it and it lasts through the years, we'll see.
I am not trying to be a historian and a dramatist; I'm a dramatist, a dramatic historian, or one who does a dramatic interpretation of history.
But I suppose film is distinctive because of its nature, of its being able to cut through time with editing.
Anybody who's been through a divorce will tell you that at one point. they've thought murder. The line between thinking murder and doing murder isn't that major.
If anything, if you can get somebody interested in something and get them excited, that's great. You should be praised for having opened the debate and having asked the right questions.
Never underestimate the power of jealousy and the power of envy to destroy. Never underestimate that.
One of the joys of going to the movies was that it was trashy, and we should never lose that.
I think experience will teach you a combination of liberalism and conservatism. We have to be progressive and at the same time we have to retain values. We have to hold onto the past as we explore the future.
I've met people who will go to a movie that I can't stand and they say that they saw that movie ten times. There's something they like and identified in that movie, and I don't see it.