I'll say that this is probably the best time for poetry since the T'ang dynasty. All the rest of the world is going to school on American poetry in the twentieth century, from Ezra Pound to W. S. Merwin, and for very good reason. We have soaked up influence in the last century like a sponge. It's cross-pollination, first law of biology, that the more variety you have the more health you have.
We are all from different cultures. Heath's [Ledger] Australian, really. I'm from here. Ang's [Lee] from China. But I think Ang gets very close in preproduction and rehearsals. And then he allows his actors - I don't think scared of actors, but I think he's scared of getting in on the scenes he's watching. The space he's watching. So he just totally disconnects from you while you're shooting.
It's one of the most beautiful scripts [Brokeback Mountain] I've ever read, and it was Ang Lee, and at the time Heath [Ledger] was a friend of mine - before we even shot the movie - and always sort of alluring to me.
There's always an intellectual side to the films Ang Lee's doing and to the characters, and there's such a deep knowledge when you've worked with the actors that he's worked with, on stage in particular, but also in film.