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December 2019

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Page 19 of 53 16 POST NOV/DEC 2019 OUTLOOK DIRECTORS A former child star, a Taiwan-born filmmaker, an actor-turned-direc- tor and a young helmer who is champion- ing diversity in Hollywood each take their pass at Post's SWOT issue. Here, Post speaks with directors Ron Howard, Ang Lee, Dexter Fletcher and Julius Onah, who share their views on the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats, as well as their Outlook, on what's coming in the year ahead for our industry. RON HOWARD The Da Vinci Code fran- chise, Cinderella Man, Apollo 13, Splash, Frost/ Nixon, A Beautiful Mind, The Beatles: Eight Days a Week, Pavarotti The former child star of The Andy Griffith Show and Happy Days not only successfully made the tricky transition to adult actor (at 22 he starred opposite John Wayne in The Shootist and was Oscar-nominated for Best Supporting Actor), but went on to establish him- self as an Oscar-winning director and producer (for 2001's A Beautiful Mind) and as one of Hollywood's most beloved, commercially successful and versatile helmers. Since making his directorial de- but in 1977 with Grand Theft Auto (when he was still playing Richie Cunningham in Happy Days), he's made an eclectic group of films and racked up multiple Oscar, BAFTA and Golden Globe wins and nominations. STRENGTHS: "I remember George Lucas, a longtime friend and a big mentor to me, telling me, 'Everything about filmmaking is just gathering the raw material until you get to the editing room and start the post process, and that's where the actual "film- making" is.' And I've never forgotten that as it's such great advice. It's easy for a director to lose sight of that when you're in the middle of some shoot with all the stress of the budget and time limitations, but when you get to the edit and post, it's just so obvious. And it's certainly the case with documentaries — and more so than ever — which I've been doing a lot of recently. I shoot quite a lot when I'm directing, and I get a lot of coverage as I like to give myself options in post, so I can find the rhythm and flow of the film, and the small, subtle moments that you can emphasize in the editing room. I've always been very active in the edit and I'm pretty tireless about it, and I really enjoy the documentary experience as I feel like I'm learning a lot and developing a sensitivity or perspective that I didn't perhaps have before, and which I can now carry into my scripted films. And a lot of that comes from post, and some of it's saying, 'You don't have to literally express a feeling.' You can arrange a couple of cuts and there's a reaction, and then that idea can register. And it works so well in a doc- umentary, but it turns out to be a really great way of connecting with an audience in a scripted piece, too. I find that all very stimulating and it's helping me grow a lot as a filmmaker." WEAKNESSES: "I definitely think there are a lot of traps you have to avoid — like OUTLOOK 2020 — DIRECTORS FOCUS ON THE YEAR AHEAD RON HOWARD, ANG LEE, DEXTER FLETCHER AND JULIUS ONAH ADDRESS THE INDUSTRY'S STRENGTHS, WEAKNESSES, OPPORTUNITIES AND THREATS IN POST'S ANNUAL SWOT/OUTLOOK FEATURE BY IAIN BLAIR Apollo 13 Ron Howard

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