I never intended to write poems, nor to be a photographer, nor to be a film-maker. I just took many, many pictures and I would put them in an album, and then some years later I decided to show them and suddenly I was called a photographer. Same thing with my poetry. They're notes that I'd written in a book and it may be considered poetry.
While shooting Ten I was sitting in the backseat, but I didn't interfere. Sometimes, I was following in another car, so I was not even present on the "set", because I thought they would work better in my absence.
When we start shooting I don't have rehearsals with characters at all. So, rather than pulling them towards myself, I travel closer to them; it's very much closer to the real person than anything I try to create. So I give them something but I also take from them.
I think the contrast between these two in the professional world of cinema mattered to me. One who has reached the ultimate point of being a star, who knows how to do everything very well, facing another person who would throughout the making of the film transfer his anxiety to both of us, to me and to Juliette, as to whether or not he would be capable of fulfilling his role. This in itself created a challenge that was actually very good for me, since I hadn't ever counterposed two such performers before, creating that challenge between someone who knows... Read more »
This concept that you refer to in Buddhism is something I've been nurtured with through the history of my country for 700, 800 years - Persian poets and philosophers haven't said anything different with regard to experiencing life in the moment, as opposed to the belief of permanence.
It seems that film-makers are being divided between those working in digital and those who are not. I think it's not something predetermined - it all depends on what project we have in mind, and on that basis we choose the medium.
It is a very important film, Life And Nothing More, in that what was filmed was inspired by a journey I had made just three days after an earthquake. And I speak not only of the film itself but also of the experience of being in that place, where only three days before 50,000 people had died.
I have somewhat lost my enthusiasm in the last years. Mainly because film students using digital video these days have not really produced anything which is more than superficial or simplistic; so I have my doubts.
It was a film that I knew, that I had seen, that I was familiar with, but I wasn't anxious about it at any point during the screening. I snoozed twice, and this is something I couldn't have imagined that I would feel detached, as I did with this film [Certified Copy].
I had intended to make another film, called Pocket Money, which was to be about children at a school.I was very much intrigued by the story [of Close Up] - it came into my dreams and I was very much influenced by it. So I called my producer and asked that we put aside Pocket Money and start something else, and he agreed.
In my experience as a director, I think there is obviously something of the way men - maybe that's a common point with Shirin - the way men see women in the film, and the way these two characters see each other.
We don't look at each other [in the car], but instead do so only when we want to. We're allowed to look around without appearing rude. We have a big screen in front of us and side views. Silence doesn't seem heavy or difficult.
People have curiosity, they have intelligence, they have interest in understanding their peers. But producers and directors of cinema have decided that the seats in the theaters have been made to transform people's minds to lazy minds.
What I am trying to say is that it is not without any value. The value of copies is that they can direct us towards the original. I was recently at the Louvre Museum and I was filming people who were viewing the Mona Lisa. I noticed the number of ordinary people, astonished, mouths agape, standing still for long stretches looking at the work, and I wondered, "Where does this come from? Are these people all art connoisseurs?" They are like me; through the years, we've seen this work in our schoolbooks or art history books, but when we stand... Read more »
The [Iranian] government grapples with more important issues and we can maybe say that these films don't really exist for them. It's not about whether they like it or don't; it's just not very important to them.
I saw this French woman, this English man in Italy. It was a film [Certified Copy] I knew well, but I had already seen it, and I was familiar with it, and I had no feeling of anxiety or responsibility toward it.
My car is my best friend. My office. My home. My location. I have a very intimate sense when I am in a car with someone next to me. We're in the most comfortable seats because we're not facing each other, but sitting side by side.
When I find the character, I try to spend time with them and get to know them very well. Therefore my notes are not from the character that I had in my mind before, but are instead based on the people I've met in real life.
The starting point and the ending point are nothing but two arbitrary choices. You make them as in soccer games, where they chose that it's 90 minutes, not less and not more. But the choices are the responsibility of the filmmaker. You have to choose to join the story at an arbitrary point, and you leave it at an arbitrary point.
I think I'm no different to my friends who are doctors or businessmen or architects - we all started watching films of the golden age together. But whether I'm making films or writing poetry or doing photography, it's very much rooted in my sense of unease. And that's really where everything goes back to.
This kind of directing, I think, is very similar to being a football coach. You prepare your players and place them in the right places, but once the game is on, there's nothing much you can do - you can smoke a cigarette or get nervous, but you can't do much.
When I'm in the process of making a movie I'm not thinking about the finished result, and whether people have to see it once or more than once, and what the reaction to it will be. I just make it, and then I live with the consequences, some of which may not be as pleasant as I'd like! I know one thing, however. Many viewers may come out of the theater not satisfied, but they won't be able to forget the movie. I know they'll be talking about it during their next dinner. I want them to be a little... Read more »
This was pointed out to me by somebody who referred to the paintings of Rembrandt and his use of light: some elements are highlighted while others are obscured or even pushed back into the dark. And it's something that we do - we bring out elements that we want to emphasise.