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Ray Pride

By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Minghella on writing, or not

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Robert J. Elisberg posts a 1999 interview with Anthony Minghella about writing: When you write, how do you generally work? Do you have any specific kind of music playing or prefer silence? I work fitfully, in hope rather than in expectation, invent methods which last a week, and fill notebooks with tiny, illegible writing which often defies my own attempts to decipher it. I find any excuse not to write, despair of writing, measure my achievements like a schoolboy and give myself undeserved rewards for completing a page, daren’t leave my room when I’m working in case I finally have a fully-formed thought, and preside over the process convinced that in a drawer somewhere exists the finished piece of work, and that I’m permitted, to the delight of some cruel spirit, to have fleeting access to the drawers, sometimes for 30 seconds, sometimes for an hour, but then it slams shut and will never advertise its next opening. I know that the minute I leave the room to annoy my family, to catch the end of a football game, to lie down, the drawer springs open and waits until it hears me take the stairs… I always listen to music, my passion and vice is music, I will be denied access to heaven because of the number of CDs I own, and I have gluttony for all types and colours of music. I might listen to Hungarian folk songs, Portishead, Ella Fitzgerald and Van Morrison in the same work session. And I always listen to Bach. My work has been a shameless advertisement for Bach, from my plays, through my first film, Truly Madly Deeply, through The English Patient and most recently, in The Talented Mr Ripley, which has The St. Matthew Passion in the first scene. [More at the link.]

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“Ten years ago at Telluride, I said on a panel that theatrical distribution was dying. It seemed obvious to me. I was surprised how many in the audience violently objected: ‘People will always want to go to the movies!’ That’s true, but it’s also true that theatrical cinema as we once knew it has died. Theatrical cinema is now Event Cinema, just as theatrical plays and musical performances are Events. No one just goes to a movie. It’s a planned occasion. Four types of Event Cinema remain.
1. Spectacle (IMAX-style blockbusters)
2. Family (cartoon like features)
3. Horror (teen-driven), and
4. Film Club (formerly arthouse but now anything serious).

There are isolated pockets like black cinema, romcom, girl’s-night-out, seniors, teen gross-outs, but it’s primarily those four. Everything else is TV. Now I have to go back to episode five of ‘Looming Tower.'”
~ Paul Schrader

“Because of my relative candor on Twitter regarding why I quit my day job, my DMs have overflowed with similar stories from colleagues around the globe. These peeks behind the curtains of film festivals, venues, distributors and funding bodies weren’t pretty. Certain dismal patterns recurred (and resonated): Boards who don’t engage with or even understand their organization’s artistic mission and are insensitive to the diverse neighborhood in which their organization’s venue is located; incompetent founders and/or presidents who create only obstacles, never solutions; unduly empowered, Trumpian bean counters who chip away at the taste and experiences that make organizations’ cultural offerings special; expensive PR teams that don’t bring to the table a bare-minimum familiarity with the rich subcultural art form they’re half-heartedly peddling as “product”; nonprofit arts organizations for whom art now ranks as a distant-second goal behind profit.”
~ Eric Allen Hatch