35 Fascinating Facts about Movie Directors

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1Director Peter

Director Peter Weir wanted to have cameras installed in behind every theater showing ‘The Truman Show’ and have the projectionist cut the power at some point during the film, cut to the viewers so they’d be watching themselves, and then cut back to the movie.


2. Director of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, James Gunn, and the director of Baby Driver, Edgar Wright, consulted with each other to make sure that these two films would not have the same songs on their soundtracks.


3. Jonathan Lynn, the director of My Cousin Vinny (1992) has a law degree from Cambridge and that film is highly regarded in the legal community for its realistic depiction of courtroom procedure and trial strategy.


4. Shawshank Redemption’s director and writer Frank Darabont was offered $2.5 million from Rob Reiner to let him write and direct it and cast Tom Cruise as Andy and Harrison Ford as Red. Darabont refused, saying that this was his “chance to do something really great.”


5. George Miller, who was an M.D. at that time, was inspired to make Mad Max (1979) when he witnessed fights break out during a gas shortage in Australia. He assumed in the future nations would not implement the infrastructure for renewable energy until it was too late and this could lead to a dystopia.


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6Stanley Kubrick

Director Stanley Kubrick, known for his endless takes and long production schedules, obsessed for months over the proper response to a fan letter from the great director Akira Kurosawa. Following many unsent drafts over several months, Kurosawa died before Kubrick could reply.


7. In 1987, director John Landis was acquitted on 3 counts of involuntary manslaughter after actor Vic Morrow and two children aged 6 and 7 were decapitated on the set of The Twilight Zone movie in 1982.


8. When making ‘The Incredibles’, director Brad Bird intentionally used artists who were likely to either quit or be fired from Pixar; because he believed only they could create everything that he needed.


9. Director of “The Princess Bride,” Rob Reiner, had the screenplay writer change the last scene from the fairytale characters riding off happily ever after to the grandfather and grandson coming together through the experience of reading the story.


10. Christopher Nolan, director of The Dark Knight trilogy and Inception, among other films does not use a cell phone or an e-mail because he’s just “not interested”, it gives him “time to think”, and he also prohibits them on the set of a movie.


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11Quentin Tarantino

When Quentin Tarantino invited John Travolta to come by his apartment to discuss playing Vincent in Pulp Fiction, Travolta had interesting news: it was the exact same apartment that he rented while getting his start in Hollywood.


12. George Lucas told a collaborator that his plan for the ending of Return of the Jedi was to have Luke become the new Darth Vader and destroy the Rebel Fleet. The collaborator liked the idea. Lucas told him he’d only been joking.


13. Chris Columbus was originally set to direct National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation but dropped out after difficult meetings with star Chevy Chase. Instead, Columbus made Home Alone; the highest-grossing Christmas film of all time.


14. Director Robert Zemeckis, who has approval over all films in the Back to the Future franchise, says that he will block all attempts to remake or reboot the original film.


15. According to Taika Waititi, 80% of the dialogue in Thor: Ragnarok was improvised, in order to create a “very loose and collaborate mood” among the cast in an attempt to replicate the tone and sensibility from his previous films.


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16James Cameron

James Cameron was homeless when writing The Terminator, and sold the rights for $1, on the condition he could direct it.


17. Alfred Hitchcock once bet a prop man a week’s salary to spend the night chained up in a movie studio, giving him a beaker of brandy to get him through the night. It was laced with strong laxatives. The following morning, the film crew found the poor man crying in a puddle of his own feces.


18. Harmony Korine, the director of ‘Spring Breakers’ was banned from ‘The Late Show’ when David Letterman found him rifling through Meryl Streep’s purse backstage.


19. Kurt Russel directed Tombstone but didn’t want to be listed as the director. Of the two listed directors, one was fired very early in the production and the second was a “ghost director.”


20. The Lord of the Rings director, Peter Jackson, orchestrated 20,000 cricket fans during a game’s inning breaks in order to produce the sound of the Uruk-hai army in The Two Towers.


21John Ford

Director John Ford was sent to the island of Midway to film a documentary on life at a small, isolated military base. He ended up getting caught in the Battle for Midway, but he filmed the entire thing and was also injured during the fight.


22. Director of Guardians of the Galaxy James Gunn wrote a script with the actual dialogue for Vin Diesel so that he would know what inflections to give when he said his lines as “I am Groot.”


23. Tim Burton was reportedly uncomfortable with casting Christopher Walken as Max Shreck in Batman Returns. When the casting director asked him why he said, “Because that man scares the hell out of me.”


24. James Gunn wanted Chris Pratt for Guardians of the Galaxy so much he was willing to CGI a six-pack on the actor.


25. Ron Howard stated that after the first test preview of the film Apollo 13, one of the comment cards indicated “total disdain”; the audience member had written that it was a “typical Hollywood” ending and that the crew would never have survived.

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