Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Lunch with Roger Corman

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The obligatory first-director’s lunch [with producer Roger Corman] before Caged Heat was the most extraordinary hour, just amazing. Not because Roger picked up the tab—although it was a free lunch at Cyrano’s—but for the way he just machine-gunned the rules of directing at me. Like: Find legitimate, motivated excuses for moving the camera but always look for ways to move it. The eyeball, he said, was the organ most utilized in moviegoing. If you don’t keep the eyeball entertained, no way you’ll get the brain involved. Use as many interesting angles as you can. Don’t repeat composition in closeups. Don’t remind the eye it’s already seen the same thing. Make your villain as fascinating as your hero. A one-dimensional villain won’t be as scary as a complicated, interesting one. It was amazing.

Jonathan Demme, quoted in How I Made a Hundred Movies in Hollywood and Never Lost a Dime

Written by nevalalee

April 30, 2017 at 7:30 am

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