Pacino – I Learned More About Acting From John Than Anybody


A moving tribute to the talent of John Cazale by fellow actor Al Pacino.  Exertp from:

I Knew It Was You: Rediscovering John Cazale (2009) – IMDb

via rikinvasani

David Lynch – The Man Behind The Curtain


 Photo by MARK BERRY

David Lynch – The Man Behind The Curtain. The legendary filmmaker talks about his work.

Los Angeles, 2010



THENEWCINEMA: Godard once said that the terrible thing in cinema was, that it is so hard to do, what a painter does quite naturally:  He stops, steps back, gets discouraged, starts again, changes something. He can please himself. What are your thoughts on that kind of filmmaking?  Is it possible to work like that in film?

DAVID LYNCH: Yes it is possible and it’s called “action and re-action” in my mind anyways. You do this in every medium. You do something then you look and react to that and it indicates the next move… it happens all the time in cinema, it happens all the time in painting, it happens all the time in any medium. Its action and reaction and it’s going on all the time and then your reaction is another action and your reacting to that one… and it just goes on.


TNC: What I was getting at is… that making films is such a big enterprise compared to making a painting.  The luxury of a painter is that he can make a painting, then if he feels like it he can abandon it halfway thru or get back to it later if he changes his mind.

DL: Like I said, I think it’s the same. It is unfortunate that if halfway thru a film you ran out of ideas and you needed to think and therefore stop the production.  I don’t think too many people would be very happy. But it is possible I think.  In ‘Eraserhead’, for instance, a lot of times because we ran out of money, things stopped. But that gave me an opportunity to think deeper into the thing.  I always say, films go so fast it’s difficult to sink in and get deeper into the thing and it’s a sadness.  But it is possible in some instances to go at a slower rate and sink in even with a commercial film… I think it is.


Lukas Haas



Lukas Haas. The fervently charming actor talks about a career that spans almost three decades in front of the camera.

Los Angeles, 2010




THENEWCINEMA: You have been a professional actor since you were five years old. That makes almost thirty years in front of the camera.  Do you still have a passion for acting?

LUKAS HAAS: Me, yes… yes of course!!!  It’s one of those jobs where… it is a real fortune to be able to do it… I mean acting as a profession.  For one thing it’s obviously a really creative job and there are all sorts of facets to it that keep it interesting and creative… Through my career I have met really interesting people and gotten to go to amazing places and done really interesting things I never would have expected to be able to do.  And at the same time I get to be creative and take on different challenges and different characters. So it’s a great, great job.  It’s hard not to be passionate about it.


TNC: You just finished shooting ‘‘Inception’’ with Christopher Nolan. Tell me about your experience working with him.

LH: Chris is great!  He is a really interesting guy and he is so in control of his craft… what he does… he is a real master of film making. You don’t get to work with all that many directors like that in your career.  I have worked with some great directors… but its only once in awhile I get to work with a director like that.  It’s impressive, he knows exactly what he is looking for and that gives you so much confidence in him. You know that he knows what he’s doing and you can rely on his vision. Sometimes you work with a director, especially if it’s a young director, and you… you’re almost trying to help them figure out what they want. But it was the opposite in this case… you had to keep up!



Lorenz on Fassbinder – From ‘‘Despair’’ to ‘‘Querelle’’



Editor Juliane Lorenz talks about life with filmmaker Rainer Werner Fassbinder.

Berlin, 2010





THENEWCINEMA: Tell me about the first time you met Fassbinder.

JULIANE LORENZ: I was working as an assistant to Ila von Hasperg who was editing ‘‘Chinese Roulette’’ for Rainer. They were shooting in the countryside in a village where the family of Michael Ballhaus had a little castle. Ila was already editing, she had an editing table out there and I was in Munich preparing the rushes.  So the first time I met him was when he came to watch a first cut in the Munich editing room. I will never forget that moment… I was horribly shy and he was a person who, everyone said… ‘‘he is a monster’’…but turns out he was not a monster, but a very sweet and calm man. He watched the cut, laughed a few times, then got up and said thank you. That is when Ila introduced us.


TNC: What was he like as a person, I mean the man, not the filmmaker?

JL: The person I met… he was twenty-nine at the time and I was nineteen… he had made over 26 films and obviously had a life behind him. What I noticed and what I always will remember is that he was a man who was trying to make a break with a complicated private life and a difficult past.  He longed for something new and to separate from a negative period… things that weighed on him… a man tired to care all the time for other people. So the person I met was someone going in a new direction and you can see that in his work, “Satan’s Brew” for example. But when I met him he was in the process of recovering his confidence and had decided to concentrate on his future and his films. He was famous in France, he was famous in America, but he still had to fight in his own country. There were critics who really loved his work, but he didn’t have that kind of recognition in Germany. He wanted to reach people and also be a normal working director not a public spectacle. In the public view he was still this guy who wore a leather jacket and sits in bars and is a homosexual or bisexual or neither. Public opinion was mostly focused on that, not on him as a filmmaker and artist. Basically he was not fitting the mold of German society.


TNC: What is one character trait that defines Fassbinder the filmmaker?

JL: (Laughs) A serious man, absolutely honest, someone that explored the craziness and talents of other people and incorporated them in his work. Someone who gave a lot of work to other people… gave a lot of people an opportunity to be involved in something meaningful.  Generous.


Mariel Hemingway – ‘‘Manhattan’’ The Birth Of A Legend



Actress Mariel Hemingway talks about ‘‘Manhattan’’ and her work with director Woody Allen.

Los Angeles, 2010



THENEWCINEMA: “Manhattan”, when was the last time you saw “Manhattan” and what did you think?

MARIEL HEMINGWAY: I think I saw “Manhattan” maybe three years ago and to this day I think it is one of the greatest films ever made, having nothing to do with the fact that I am in it. I just think its one of the most extraordinary films ever made. The black and white… Gershwin, the view of Manhattan… that was my introduction to the city. It was incredible and maybe that is why I like the film so much… it’s what made me want to act. Also Woody Allen… to learn from somebody that is that extraordinary a director, was an incredible experience. A lot of films, and I have made some of them, are out there only to make money… they are not inspired by someone seeking to do something right… I think “Manhattan” was just that kind of film… someone trying to make something inspired. To me it really is an incredible film.


TNC: So “Manhattan” was really your introduction to cinema, your first major role?

MH: It wasn’t my first film really… I did “Lipstick” when I was thirteen… After that I made a television movie and then “Manhattan”. Woody wrote the part for me after seeing “Lipstick”, so yes I guess, in a way it was like the first real film experience for me. Working with Diane Keaton and watching them together, it was an amazing introduction to this world…

TNC: Tell me about the first time you met Woody Allen?

MH: Well… I literally did grow up in Idaho and back then it was a very small town. We used to go to the movies only on weekends because I was young and it was like 50 cents. Two weeks prior I had seen this movie called “Sleeper” … and I didn’t understand it. It was very sexually orientated and I had no idea, I had never had a boyfriend.  Then two weeks later my mother screams to me to come inside, that I have a phone call from Woody Allen. I have no idea who Woody Allen is… and they are all ‘‘that movie you saw a couple weeks ago, Sleeper” and I was like ‘‘he’s weird’’… Woody said, ‘‘I want you to come out here and read for me, it’s this movie I am making and you don’t get a script’’. I did get a script, but it was all very hush-hush and secretive. But shortly after I went to New York.  I remember that I was very nervous, because I had now discovered who he was and that he was important and all. Everyone was like… ‘‘oh my God’’… ‘‘this is incredible’’… and of course this made me even more nervous. So when finally I read for him, I kept the script in front of my face the whole time, so he absolutely couldn’t see me. To this day I have absolutely no idea how I even got the part… but soon after we made this movie and making it changed my life! I moved to New York… I was sixteen… before that I was getting offers to do stuff but it wasn’t… I was a ski racer, a kid, I didn’t really think about it much.  So making this film changed all that.

TNC: Is Woody Allen… you know the man. Is he like that in real life?

MH: Neurotic?


Paz De La Huerta – That Obscure Object Of Desire



Beautiful, capricious, fascinating… The young actress discusses her work with filmmakers Jim Jarmusch, Gaspar Noé and Martin Scorsese.

New York, 2009



THENEWCINEMA: What does a young actress do between jobs?

PAZ DE LA HUERTA: Me?  Well you have to audition… I never waited for anything; I am not that kind of person. I am very creative so if I don’t have a film, I do something on my own.  I have directed a few short films and when the depression hit there were no jobs really and the studios where scared and nobody had any money.  Wanting to do something, I ended up working with a photographer that I really love and we made a book called, “The birds that didn’t die over the winter”.  So… I am always doing something creative no matter what. And then of course auditioning, auditioning, auditioning.  I think you should even audition for shit you don’t like because it is good practice.  At times I would do four auditions a week.


TNC: Day one, you got the script, now what?  How do you prepare for an audition?

PDH: I read the script once through so I know what it is about and the broader spectrum of the life of the character, that I am supposed to audition for.  Then I take the “sides” which are, you know the pieces of the script that I have to go audition with and I memorize… I really memorize all of my lines, thoroughly.  The third part is, I find out what the scene is about, find out if I have to use things to get me to those points emotionally.  But normally I am very present and the emotions will come to me. Then at the audition I have the lines by my side, so it’s not a problem, I just do the scene.  Hopefully, but that is rarely the case when you go into the audition. You are working with a good actor, so all you have to do is work off them and respond and be present.  But sometimes you have to use tools that for me are… I studied the “Sensory Technique” and then just things in my life… whatever is going on… I always first connect with my center and whatever is really going on with me at that moment and then I manipulate it.  What I always do though is take care of myself and get a lot of sleep the night before. But it depends on the audition what I do… yoga always helps.