Conversations with Scorsese
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Now in paperback, and with a new afterword: the history and process of moviemaking in general, and of Martin Scorsese's brilliant and varied films in particular, through the words and wit of the master director.
With Richard Schickel as the canny and intelligent guide, these conversations take us deep into Scorsese's life and work. He reveals which films are most autobiographical, and what he was trying to explore and accomplish in other films. He explains his personal style and describes many of the rewarding artistic and personal relationships of his career, including collaborations with Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, Jack Nicholson, and Leonardo DiCaprio. An invaluable illumination and appreciation of one of our most admired film directors.
films. For one thing, the financial stakes in these pictures are much lower, which means the pressures on Marty are also lessened—especially deadline pressures. “You can approach the material carefully,” he says. “You can let the film grow naturally. You are much more free to play with the form than you can with a feature film.” The Kazan film provides a particularly good example. He and Kent Jones (co-writer and co-director) worked on it for several years, testing different approaches to his
Butcher” Cutting Cameron Diaz … Jenny Everdeane Jim Broadbent … William “Boss” Tweed John C. Reilly … Happy Jack Mulraney Henry Thomas … Johnny Sirocco Liam Neeson … “Priest” Vallon ORIGINAL MUSIC BY Howard Shore DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY Michael Ballhaus FILM EDITOR Thelma Schoonmaker CASTING BY P. Larry Kaplan Ellen Lewis PRODUCTION DESIGN BY Dante Ferretti COSTUME DESIGN BY Sandy Powell ASSISTANT DIRECTOR Joseph Reidy THE AVIATOR (2004) DIRECTED BY Martin Scorsese
there in the Arctic, they crash and they sit there. MS: But there’s something very mystical about it—especially the fellow who goes out and dies. He thinks he’s miles away from the plane, and he dies right by the plane. It’s very moving. I watched it again last week on television. Not a great one, but something unique. RS: Well, I think his great period was the early 1930s when he was at Warner Bros. MS: I have one of these films here called Other Men’s Women I’d like to look at. RS: Oh,
the movie, because what he says is very powerful. And we’ve already seen the Chinese marching through. He’s putting poison into his ear. MS: He’s telling the Dalai Lama it’s over, that his system is no good, that theocracy is out of date. The Dalai Lama says he’s going to institute reforms. Mao says it can’t be done fast enough, it’s not good enough. Everything’s got to go. Because religion is poison. And the Dalai Lama said all he could look at was Mao’s shoes—the shine on his shoes. He watches
problems—there were stuntmen from Yugoslavia. We didn’t know what was happening sometimes. Yet somehow it was a wonderful place to be at that moment, whatever you may think of the film. A dream realized: Marty developed Gangs of New York for over two decades and finally realized his ambitions in 2002, in a flawed, brilliant film bedeviled by cost overruns and compromises. RS: I think the film has brilliant stuff in it. MS: But as you’ve said to me, If I could have finished the Draft Riots