Thursday, May 24

Difficult Directors

Werner Herzog; most difficult directiors of all time
Werner Herzog

I'm doing research for a short story. One of my characters is a persnickety director and since I know little to nothing about directors, persnickety or otherwise, I googled "difficult directors" and came across this article: Top 10 Craziest Directors. It's quite entertaining.

For instance, did you know that Akira Kurosawa, one of the most influential artists of the 20th century (Seven Samurai, Rashomon, Ikiru, The Hidden Fortress),
... was known as a stern taskmaster and a devoted perfectionist. His nickname was “Tenno,” which is Japanese for “Emperor,” reflecting his dictatorial control and command over his projects. There are many stories about the lengths that Kurosawa would go to in order to get the perfect shot. For a scene in Rashomon where there was a great rainstorm, he had water mixed with ink sprayed from fire trucks onto the set so that it would show up on the camera lenses. In Throne of Blood (1957), a Japanese retelling of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Kurosawa didn’t use fake arrows when the main character is executed by a firing squad of archers. He literally had professional archers fire at the main character as he ran around trying to dodge them. At any moment he could have easily been killed [emphasis mine].
Really!!?? Firing real arrows at actors during a scene to increase authenticity. The insurance company must have had kittens, not to mention the actors.

Oh, and here's a tidbit about Orson Welles and Citizen Kane:
[H]e [William Randolph Hearst] almost succeeded in completely suppressing the film [Citizen Kane]. It is said that if it wasn’t for Hearst, Citizen Kane probably would have won all eight of its Academy Award nominations, including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actor. Instead, Hearst’s opposition was successful enough that it basically established Welles as an enfant terrible, making it almost impossible for him to get his films financed within the United States.
In any case, Top 10 Craziest Directors, is definitely educational and entertaining. 

Okay, enough procrastinating, back to it. #amwriting

Cheers.

Photo credit: Top 10 Craziest Directors

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