Thursday, November 29, 2012

Christopher Nolan Shouts Out PTA, Calls 70mm A "Superior Form"

Last night Christopher Nolan stopped by Filmlinc in NYC to discuss his "Dark Knight" trilogy on the eve of the film's Blu/DVD release and to boost the film's Awards season hopes. During the 90 minute conversation, Nolan and moderator Scott Foundas spoke extensively about his unique take on the iconic character, his influences and how Nolan is essentially one of the last filmmakers still working on film (and one of the first to shoot on 70mm IMAX). During the chat Nolan mentioned that he had seen "The Master" and it looked the way he thought a film should look. Filmlinc also has a print interview with the filmmaker which you can read an excerpt of below:
There’s a strong analog quality to your films in general and the Dark Knight films in particular. You talked about wanting to have a very tactile world, and seeing The Dark Knight Rises in IMAX 70mm you can’t escape the feeling that you’re seeing a film made on film, albeit with hundreds of CGI shots, but integrated in a way that you don’t feel that digital quality in the way you do with most movies that make heavy use of digital technology.
I recently saw a 70mm print of The Master and I realized that, other than my own films, it’s the first photochemically finished film I’ve seen in many years, and it looks the way a movie should look. To me, it’s just a superior form. In The Dark Knight Rises, we have about 430 effects shots out of 3,000, so the idea that the tail wags the dog and then you finish the film in the digital realm is illogical. We make the 430 shots fit in with the remaining 2,500 that we timed photochemically. For that reason, I’ve never done a film with more than 500 effects shots. These films have about a third or a quarter the number of CG shots of any other film on that scale. That allows me to keep working photochemically and to make the digital effects guys print out their negatives so we actually cut the effect with its background plate on film, and we can see whether it matches.
For me, it’s simply the best way to make a film, and why more people haven’t done it I could not tell you. The novelty of digital is part of it. For some filmmakers, there’s a fear of being left behind, which to me is irrational because as a director you’re not responsible for loading a camera. You can hire whoever you need to and shoot how you want to shoot, but I think, very simply, industrial economics favor change, and there’s more money in change, whether or not it’s better. But I talk to a lot of young filmmakers who want to shoot on film and see the value in it. I’ve gone out of my way to screen film prints of The Dark Knight Rises for other filmmakers, because no one prints dailies anymore—they’re not seeing the potential of film—whereas I’ve been seeing it every day I’ve been working for the past 10 years.
During the conversation he called it "Paul Thomas Anderson's 'The Master'" which was cute. Wonder if he knows PTA is a mutual admirer?

Pre-order "The Master" on Blu-ray or DVD.

Stay tuned to Twitter and Facebook for the latest news and updates.  

Monday, November 26, 2012

Bill Hader & Patton Oswalt Talk PTA; London Retrospective Coming Soon

Hope everybody had a good holiday, we have a few random odds & ends for you this morning. First up is this analysis of all of PTA's Tracking Shots by Sight & Sound. It's an excellent video which shows the evolution of the camera movement throughout his filmography and definitely worth a viewing if you haven't already seen it. Secondly, we have a quote from SNL MVP Bill Hader who was on Elvis Mitchell's excellent podcast The Treatment back in September (but we just got around to listening).
"You're into what you're into. And people can be into a lot of different things. It's funny too - when you meet people like Maya Rudolph is with Paul Thomas Anderson and Paul Thomas Anderson hangs out at SNL a lot. And I'm a huge, huge fan of his movies. But when we talk about movies we talk about like, 'Chud.' You know? Or we talk about how we both saw a double-feature of 'Darkman' and 'My Blue Heaven.' And he's goes, 'I saw that double-feature!' And I was like, 'Yeah, I went into 'Darkman' and then snuck into 'My Blue Heaven'.' He goes, 'They came out the same week and.. [trails off]' You know what I mean? Those are the things you're kinda into."
"My Blue Heaven" and "Darkman" are both available from Netflix if you'd like to recreate your own double-feature. Comedian Patton Oswalt spoke to Onion AV Club about his Random Roles and gave the following hilarious anecdote about appearing in "Magnolia."
Magnolia (1999)—“Delmer Darion” 
PO: Delmer Darion. God. I was doing a show one night, and I went back in the kitchen and was hanging out, and Paul Thomas Anderson was there. We were just talking, and he was like, “I’m doing this movie if you want a part in it.” I said, “Yeah, sure.” So they called me the next day and said I needed to come in to be fitted for a wetsuit. I said, “Can I see the screenplay first?” And they were like, “Nope.” So I went in and got this custom wetsuit made, and they gave me two pages of the script and flew me to Reno. We shot this scene and then hung out all night drinking. And a week later, we were shooting and I was in the wetsuit. It was so hot to the point where I wasn’t even sweating anymore. And Paul was dumping bottles of water on my head to keep me from passing out and I was like, “Paul, what are we doing?” He said, “I can’t say right now, but I’ll just say that you are the first frog that falls out of the sky.” And I went, “Okay.” So that’s what working with PTA is like.
Sounds about right. And finally there will be a PTA Retrospective in London at the Prince Charles Theatre starting January 23 and showing all of his films (bar "The Master" which you can now pre-order in the U.S. on DVD/Blu).

Stay tuned to Twitter and Facebook for the latest news and updates. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving: Watch Every PTA Interview On Charlie Rose

Happy Thanksgiving everyone (in the U.S. anyway). A recent post on another site prompted us to dig into the archives and revisit all of the Paul Thomas Anderson interviews with Charlie Rose. If you've never seen them, they're mandatory viewing, especially fascinating viewed in quick succession from one film to the next. Even if you have seen them, it's probably been a while so we thought we'd re-share them with you. Shout-out to DonRMB for uploading most of these. Enjoy.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

20 Minutes Of ‘The Master' Deleted Scenes Screened; Sandler Hosts ‘Magnolia' Q&A, ‘Vice' Update, More

Between the hurricane in NYC and a trip overseas we knew there would be little time to update Cigs & Vines beyond our Twitter and Facebook pages but little did we realize just how much we'd be missing. With "The Master" opening in Australia and the U.K. and Awards Season starting to heat up here, PTA has been hitting the promotional circuit with new interviews popping up on Time Out London, Francine Film (BBC Radio), Moviehole, Sunday Night Safran (Australian Radio), Popcorn Taxi, Sight & Sound, WGA, The Skinny and the LACMA where An Evening With Paul Thomas Anderson revealed a surprise for the audience.

After a screening of a pair of John Huston documentaries that helped inspire the film -- "Let There Be Light" and "Battle Of San Pietro" -- PTA unveiled a twenty minute collage of deleted scenes from "The Master" that he'd edited for inclusion on the DVD/Blu (similar to the "Blossoms & Blood" short of unused material on the "Punch-Drunk Love" disc). SlashFilm has a rundown of what was shown which lines up nicely with our own Guide To "The Master" Deleted Scenes and includes some completely unseen footage. Major spoilers follow.

Interview: The Skinny

Crest of a Wave: Paul Thomas Anderson on The Master
Feature by Jamie Dunn. Published 30 October 2012
Source: The Skinny 

According to David Thomson, cinema’s great dissident critic, the putrid stench of death hangs in the air at your local multiplex, commingling with the more familiar funk of nacho cheeze and acne-faced adolescents. “Film is not dead,” Thomson writes in a recent issue of The New Republic, “it is just dying. This morbidity is familiar to us all.” Paul Thomas Anderson, director of The Master, this festival season’s most thrilling spectacle, clearly hasn’t received the memo.

“There’s always going to be a way, right? There’s got to be,” the 42-year-old filmmaker tells me from his office in Los Angeles when I ask about Thomson and other critics’ recent premature obituaries for the medium. “But, as Neil Young says, maybe that’s a hippie dream.”

Monday, November 12, 2012

Interview: Aero Q&A (Magnolia)

Videos courtesy of Hollywood Elsewhere. Transcription courtesy of Megan Leddy.

Interview: WGA

Transcription by Nikhil Venkatesa & Isaiah Lester.

Interview: Sight & Sound

The Anderson Tapes
Source: Sight & Sound

Click the image once to view larger, then right-click it and select View Image to view at full (readable) size.

Scans courtesy of johnvanderpuije

Interview: LACMA

Listen to the full interview at KCRW.

Transcription by Megan Leddy.

Interview: Popcorn Taxi

Paul Thomas Anderson: How To F*&k Sandcastles
Source: Popcorn Taxi

Let’s set the scene.

Paul Thomas Anderson has arrived in Australia the day before. He’s jet lagged out of his skull, and has had a full day of interviews with journalists eager to discuss his new film, The Master which opens today across Australia.

After being cooped up in a hotel room all day, he’d had enough – and out onto the deck that runs along the front of Sydney’s The Sebel Pier we went.

It was a round table discussion, from right to left, it was Matt, representing Ezy DVD and Matt from Matt’s Movie Reviews, and yours truly, Oscar Hillerstrom, talking to Paul Thomas Anderson about his film.

Both Matts had first go on the questions, and because they really went ‘in there’ I took a slightly more relaxed approach, seeing as PTA was dead on his feet (after us, it was a nap for an hour, and the then launching the Cockatoo Island Film Festival) and that it was a lovely day. A serious filmmaker, who makes serious movies – is in fact just a normal guy after all. Enjoy a brief glimpse into the mind of the mind that made The Master.

Warning: in case you didn’t get this from the heading of this post – it gets a little sweary.

Interview: Sunday Night Safran

Transcription by Megan Leddy

Interview: Time Out London

Paul Thomas Anderson interview 
The director talks to Time Out about making his latest film, 'The Master' 
Source: Time Out London

‘The Master’ arrives in cinemas loaded with expectation. It’s the first film from 42-year-old American writer and director Paul Thomas Anderson, the director of ‘Boogie Nights’ and ‘Punch Drunk Love’, since his stunning 2007 film ‘There Will Be Blood’.

The film has also been the subject of endless chatter since it was mooted. Would it be ‘about’ Scientology? Was Philip Seymour Hoffman playing a version of the controversial religion’s founder, L Ron Hubbard? And what would Tom Cruise (who starred in Anderson’s 1999 film ‘Magnolia’) say and think about the whole thing?

The film itself is a marvel. Set mostly in 1950, it stars Hoffman as Lancaster Dodd, the founder of a religion called The Cause – based on the early incarnation of Dianetics, the belief system of Scientology. But it’s more accurately the story of Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix), a troubled sailor who stumbles out of the war and into Dodd’s open arms.

Dave Calhoun spoke to Anderson by phone from Sydney, on the eve of the film’s release in London, where it will first open as a 70mm presentation (it was shot on the rare 65mm format) in the West End before opening across the country two weeks later.

Interview: Moviehole

Paul Thomas Anderson
Source: Moviehole

He’s responsible for some of the meatiest cinema fare out there, with his latest ”The Master” up there with some of the most dramatic, emotionally-stirring epics of the year, but surprisingly, acclaimed writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson’s taste in film likely isn’t that dissimilar to the everyday cinemagoer. Most weekends you’ll likely find Anderson (and actress wife Maya Rudolph) plonked down in front of the TV watching a cheesy popcorn flick like ”Die Hard” or ”Flying High”.

Interview: Francine Film

Listen to the audio here. (Starts at the 17:14 mark).

Transcription by Le_Ted

And so to Paul Thomas Anderson, oscar-nominated for writing and directing Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and There will be Blood, his 2006 film of oil prospecting, greed and American ambition at the very beginning of the 20th century.  His new film The Master is strictly mid-century, concerning Freddie Quell, a troubled former World War II naval serviceman who in a fog of uncertainty, anger and booze, falls under the influence of Lancaster Dodd, a man with a belief system and a following known as "The Cause."  A man who bears certain biographical similarities to L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology.  Dodd allows Quell to work for him, but he wants to sort him out too.

(17:54 - 18:37: Dialogue from the film trailer: "Why all the skulking and sneaking?  You've wandered from the proper path, haven't you?  The problems that you've had."  "I don't have any problems, I dunno what I've told you, but if you have work for me to do I can do it."  "You seem so familiar to me."  "Well, what do you do?"  "I am a writer, a doctor, a nuclear physicist, a theoretical philosopher, but above all, I am a man . . . hopelessly inquisitive man, just like you.")

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Interview: Crikey

Good film, just don’t mention the ‘war’: interview with Paul Thomas Anderson
Source:  Crikey

I assumed acclaimed filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson would be happy to discuss correlations between his new film, The Master, and the Scientology movement on which it was partly based. I was wrong. 

He would have known.

He would have known before he landed in Australia to promote his new film. He would have known before he yelled “action”. He would have known before he started working on the screenplay.

Acclaimed writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest film, The Master (which opens in Australian cinemas November 8) has been associated with the word “Scientology” since the vaguest outlines of its storyline surfaced.

Interview: SBS

The Master: Paul Thomas Anderson interview
Source: SBS

As The Master hits local cinemas, its maker opens up about his ongoing fascination for stories about male dynamics.

A filmmaker whose output is ambitious and challenging in both subject matter (Hard Eight; Boogie Nights; There Will be Blood) and style (Magnolia; Punch Drunk Love), Paul Thomas Anderson has been answering questions about his complex Scientology-themed drama The Master, since it premiered at the Venice Film Festival in September. A few hours before its first Australian screening as the opening night film at the Cockatoo Island Film Festival, a contemplative (and severely jetlagged) Anderson sat with SBS Film.

Interview: Quickflix

Interview: Paul Thomas Anderson (The Master)
By Simon Miraudo | November 5, 2012
Source: Quickflix 
Paul Thomas Anderson's reputation is such that merely uttering the titles of his six feature films should be enough of an introduction. Frankly, the press shy auteur would probably prefer his work speak for itself. He's enjoyed a nearly unprecedented run of creative success since making his debut with 1996's Hard Eight (aka Sydney), which was followed by Boogie Nights, Magnolia, Punch-Drunk Love, and There Will Be Blood. The writer-director looks set to add to his five career Oscar nominations with new movie The Master, starring Joaquin Phoenix as a  troubled WW2 vet who falls under the spell of an L. Ron Hubbard-esque religious leader (Philip Seymour Hoffman).
I spoke to Anderson about giving Phoenix his first role since his fake flame-out, reuniting with Hoffman, The Master's surprise relationship to Anchorman, rumours of the project's abandonment back in 2010, and whether or not he's gotten used to spruiking his pictures. Hit the 'Play' button below to hear the interview, as well as excerpts from Jonny Greenwood's score.