Friday, November 21, 1997

Interview: Creative Screenwriting, Paul Thomas Anderson

Creative Screenwriting Magazine, Written By Kristine McKenna
?? ?? 1997

Paul Thomas Anderson introduced himself this year in a very big way. February saw the release of his first film, Hard Eight, a study of four lost souls adrift on the Reno gambling scene that garnered glowing reviews, but was so poorly marketed that it never found its audience. Just eight months later he hit a home run with his second film Boogie Nights, a two-and-a-half-hour epic chronicling the shifting fortunes of the pornography industry during the years of 1977 to 1983. Set in the Fernando Valley, where Anderson was born in 1970 and continues to live, the film features an ensemble cast that includes Mark Wahlberg, Burt Reynolds, Julianne Moore, Heather Graham, John C. Reilly, William Macy, and Alfred Molina.

Tuesday, November 18, 1997

Interview: People/AOL Transcript With Don Cheadle

People/AOL Chat Transcript: With Don Cheadle
November 17th, 1997

Quentin Tarantino, move over. The latest entry in the Cinematiste Enfant Terrible competition? Twenty-six year old Paul Thomas Anderson whose second film, Boogie Nights is now playing at a theater near you. Anderson began his career working as a production assistant on assorted television movies, videos and game shows in Los Angeles and New York. His first short film, Cigarettes and Coffee proved a hit at the 1993 Sundance Festival - allowing him to rework the concept into the feature-length Hard Eight , a strangely compassionate, character-driven story about hustlers in Nevada. Boogie Nights, Anderson's second movie, continues his fascination with people on the fringes. This time out his camera is focused on the mom-and-pop entrepreneurs of the adult film industry in Los Angeles circa late-seventies/early-eighties. Despite its controversial subject matter, the film has opened to rave reviews.

PEOPLE Online talked to Paul Thomas Anderson - as well as Don Cheadle who plays Buck in Boogie Nights - on November 17. Here's what the two of them had to say.

Monday, November 17, 1997

Interview: AOL/Premiere Magazine Chat Transcript

AOL/Premiere Magazine Chat Transcript With Paul Thomas Anderson
November 17 1997

Boogie Nights is one of the most audacious movies ever to come out of Hollywood. An in-depth look at the Southern California porn industry, circa 1980, Boogie Nights, stars Mark Wahlberg, Burt Reynolds and Julianne Moore, and it brings the era of sex, drugs and disco to vivid life. With its explicit sex scenes, its random violence and its portrayal of a feverish, out-of-control society, Boogie Nights is sure to be the most talked-about film of the year.

Astonishingly, its director, Paul Thomas Anderson, was a young boy during the period it chronicles. But the 26-year-old filmmaker has a vivid memory of the sights and sounds of the late 70s and early 80s -- the shag haircuts, the lava lamps, the water beds. Boogie Nights is his second feature (his first was Hard Eight, with Gwyneth Paltrow), but already Anderson shows the psychological penetration of a master filmmaker.

Sunday, November 09, 1997

Interview: "Anderson Boogies With Confidence"

San Diego Tribune, Written By David Elliott
November 9th, 1997

"The motion picture represents our customs and our daily life more distinctly than any other medium. . . "  -- MGM studio god Irving Thalberg, 1929

Irving Thalberg never did, or could, or would, make a movie like "Boogie Nights." Just the thought would have turned his white skin to blue velvet.

I try to imagine courtly mogul Thalberg and his showcase wife, Norma Shearer, cozy in their home screening room -- Irving formal yet dapper, Norma in something silky concocted by Adrian. Late into the very elite "Boogie Nights" preview, one of the more outspoken guests (Anita Loos? Marion Davies?) chirps, "Yowza, look at that love wand on Dirk Diggler!"

Yes, the flashback is unreal, impossible, although the Thalbergs certainly knew the facts of life, and you can bet there was little laundering of hot gossip about Fatty Arbuckle, Mae West or Errol Flynn. But Thalberg's Hollywood was largely defined by his taste, which meant major book adaptations, the Production Code in force, and a clean screen (though often speckled with double-entendres).

Thalberg had no need to make films about male bimbos with big bazookas. There was more sexiness in the beam of Clark Gable's smile, or the silvery shrug of Jean Harlow's shoulder. It has taken 60 years after the Thalberg era (and almost 30 since "breast king" Russ Meyer briefly enjoyed a Fox contract) for Hollywood to be forcefully reminded that sex films are, indeed, part of "the industry," even if parked back near the drainage pipes.

Saturday, November 01, 1997

Michael Penn - Try (1997)

Shot in one of the longest hallways in North America, "Try" includes "Boogie Nights" talent (Hoffman, Walters, Jane). Look for an homage to Pollack's "They Shoot Horses, Don't They?". PTA trickery: Michael Penn weaving in and out of the hallway (into a door, and ending up behind the camera, as it continues to pull back.)