The Director's Chair > Paul Thomas Anderson

Other actors/directors/etc. who mention PTA

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I tried to see if there might have been a topic on this already but I thought maybe it would be cool to compile quotes from others in the business who mention PTA. I thought of this because I just came across a quote from Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose) who said:

"Hollywood is an area where many things about the cinema are going on - but it is not cinema. When I think about American cinema, I think of Scorsese, Coppola, Paul Thomas Anderson. Hollywood is just a name on a hill.'
 - from an article in the Daily Mail UK

Cory Everett:
here are a handful i've compiled over the last year or two.

Rian Johnson (writer/director of Brick) in CHUD interview...

Q: Who are the current working directors that you consider the best? The ones you look up to.
Johnson: Iím a huge fan of a couple. Wes Anderson, I love him. Paul Thomas Anderson, Iím really excited about the new one that heís working on.

Q: There was just a script review for that.
Johnson: I read it. The guy was ecstatic but he didnít give much information.

Q: The guy was psyched, but he didnít know it was based on a book already.
Johnson: I know! He suggested they novelize it! [laughs] Thatís a little curious. Although that reminds me of one of the funniest things Iíve seen in a bookstore, which was the novelization of the Gwyneth version of Great Expectations. It was a novelization of that movie.


Eli Roth gives a thanks to all the supportive fimmakers he met after Cabin Fever, and included was PT Anderson, saying that he was "encouraging."


In the book The Mind Of The Modern Moviemaker: 20 Conversations with the New Generation of Filmmakers, that features interviews with directors like Michel Gondry & Brett Ratner PT is mentioned a few times.
When asked "Who is the most impressive filmmaker working today?" both Todd Phillips (Old School) and Joe Carnahan (Narc) named Paul Thomas Anderson. 

Todd Phillips said "I always said to Ben, "This is going to be a romantic comedy between two straight guys."  It follows the beats of a regular romantic comedy because they're thrown together, there's tension, and they're thrown apart and then they come back together stronger than ever.  A typical romantic comedy to me is like R&B music.  It's just not my thing, but to take two guys and virtually make a romantic comedy with all those beats just seems interesting to me.  I find romantic comedies are rarely romantic and funny, which is why what P.T. Anderson did with Punch Drunk [Love] is like the greatest romantic comedy of all time- because it's actually funny and romantic.  When Todd Philips was asked about the similarities between Fight Club and Old School, he names it as his "favorite movie of the nineties, other than Boogie Nights."   When asked if Todd Phillips test screens his films he said "Every film I've done.  I think testing a comedy is absolutely one-hundred-percent crucial, and I think testing a movie in general is crucial.  I always find it amazing when directors- outside of Steven Spielberg- just say, "Here's the movie; take it or leave it."  I find it astounding because, ultimately, you really don't know what you have until you put it up there.  Certainly comedy, when you watch it with an audience, then you know, "OK, that works; that doesn't work."  You're making a movie for the audience.  Road Trip was not the story I needed to tell.  It wasn't going to be the pinnacle of my career.  It was a movie I was making to be funny and I think ninety-nine percent of directors who make comedies will tell you the same thing.  It's totally different for Paul Thomas Anderson and people making films that are personal stories that are like, "This is exactly the way I wanted to tell it.  If it doesn't work for you, it doesn't work for you; so be it."

Joe Carnahan even went on to say that "I don't want to see something that a director doesn't personalize in some way.  I look at Punch Drunk Love and I think, Damn, I want to believe that this guy was in love like that at some point in his life, because it movies me in a way that I see myself in that.  I think that's what all great films do for us.  They come down to two very simple things: human beings and human behavior.  At least, the ones that I'm really intrigued and interested by.  I don't need to see fucking spaceships blow up."

When Roger Dodger & P.S. writer/director Dylan Kidd was asked Are there filmmakers out there who you'd like to emulate?, he said: "Two guys I would like to emulate are Linklater and Winterbottom, because they're prolific and versatile.  They're able to play in both worlds- big studio stuff and smaller indies.  There's something less intimidating about Richard Linklater.  I watch a P.T. Anderson movie and I feel like crawling under the covers like, "My God, I would never move the camera like that.  That guy's a genius.  I should go back and work in real estate."  With Linklater and Winterbottom there's something that isn't too precious about their movies that I really like.  It never feels labored.  It feels like a bunch of really smart, passionate people got together and made a movie." 
When Neil LaBute was asked Whose films today do you make a point of watching?, he too names Paul Thomas Anderson along with Woody Allen, Eric Rohmer, Mike Leigh, Jane Campion the Coen brothers and fellow Anderson, Wes.

I've heard that you like to watch movies every night while you're shooting a film?
Brett Ratner: Yeah.  I always do that.  It keeps it fresh for me.  I tend not to watch movies in the same genre.  I watch movies in different genres and there might be a similar scene.  I have so many references.  That's why Scorsese and Spielberg are so quick on their feet and do such great work- because they have all the references.  They've seen what works.  I think that's what helps me too.  Look, I'm not like De Palma or even Paul Thomas Anderson.  I can watch Paul Thomas Anderson's films and tell you in every scene what movie he's taking from.  I know those references, but that's kind of blatant stuff that he does because he wants to show you he loves those movies.  My stuff is subliminal.  You would never even pick it up, really.  It's very subtle stuff. 
You were going to remake Cassavetes's Killing of a Chinese Bookie with Warren [Beatty] werent you?
Brett Ratner: Yeah.  I got cursed out by a lot of friends of mine who were just like, "That's a classic!" It's Paul Thomas Anderson's favorite movie, so to Paul I was the antichrist. 

Do you think you have a smaller, less mainstream film in you?
Brett Ratner:  My taste is accessible to what audiences want.  Some people just have certain sensibilities, and I'm not going to apologize for mine.  I was always envious of Paul Thomas Anderson because he was like, "Oh, me and Jonathan Demme are buddies and me and Kubrick hung out on the set with Tom and Nicole."  I was jealous of that and I was like, "Shit, I want to be friends with these directors," and I thought I have to make my personal film about someone dying of brain cancer or whatever to get the respect.  But then, after Rush Hour, when I got calls from Demme and Beatty and Bob Evans and all these guys I'm like, "You know what?  Directors aren't snobs."  They love a movie no matter what the genre is, if it works.  It gave me so much confidence because I was just like, "OK, I don't have to go make Boogie Nights."


In the latest Entertainment Weekly, Paul Haggis writes in his tribute to Robert Altman...
"I had the great honor of meeting Altman last year.  After the Oscars there's a group picture taken, and I got to stand a few shoulder-widths away.  It was truly the highlight of a great night.  When we were leaving, my friend Bennett Miller invited me to Paul Thomas Anderson's house for a quiet late-night drink.  I'd always wanted to meet Paul, so naturally I went.  And there, on the sofa, at 3 a.m., sat Robert Altman, his honorary Academy Award on the coffee table before him.  I honestly didn't know what to say- what do you say to a genius, someone you admire so much?  I opted for asking if I could get him a cup of coffee or a drink.  He said he was fine and asked where my Oscars were.  I said in the car.  I admired his- and the thought struck me that his looked taller.  He leaned forward and winked: "Mine is bigger, you know."


also: i know Judd Apatow has mentioned him several times but i can't remember where i put those.

Which current directors do you admire? óAbigail Hoover, St. Paul, Minn.
Usually they are younger directors who are fighting to get good films madeónot standard, formulaic Hollywood venal projects. I like [Paul Thomas Anderson] who did There Will Be Blood. I liked him from his earlier movies. I like the films I've seen of Alexander Payne's.

-- Woody Allen, TIME, "Ten Questions for Woody Allen"

From Entertainment Weekly:

Despite an Emmy and a pair of Golden Globes for The Office, breathless reviews for his HBO series Extras, and an inspired guest turn on The Simpsons where he tried to seduce Marge with an acoustic love song about ''Lady Di,'' Ricky Gervais isn't a celebrity in America yet. Not in the Brad Pitt sense of the word at least. So it's a little strange that he feels the need to check in to hotels here under a fake name.

When Gervais ó or, should we say, ''Paul Anderson'' ó answers the door of his suite at the Four Seasons in New York, he doesn't look much like a celebrity, either. He looks like a traveling salesman who's just been shaken out of a nap. He's wearing a black T-shirt and baggy sweatpants. His face is covered in stubble. A half-finished bottle of red wine, presumably from the night before, sits atop the minibar.

When he's asked right off the bat who Paul Anderson is, Gervais takes a seat on the sofa and shifts around uncomfortably. He didn't know this was coming and he wants to explain, because he knows that if he doesn't, he'll come off like an arrogant jerk for using an alias. On the flip side, it means that he'll also have to come up with a new fake name to use in the future. A future when, perhaps, he will be famous enough in the States to need one.

After a few stammering moments, Gervais sighs. ''He's a guy I used to work with at a radio station in England. I just thought it was such a wonderfully generic name...Paul Anderson. It's got nothing to do with the director. I haven't seen There Will Be Blood, although I'm sure it's great.'' With that settled, Gervais asks for help hatching a new identity. When it's suggested that he go with something flashy, like Johnny Depp's infamous hotel pseudonym, ''Mr. Donkey Penis,'' Gervais mulls it over: ''It's a very brave man who calls a hotel and says 'I'd like to speak to Mr. Donkey Penis.' So I see how that would be effective. But let's see...maybe Scott Houston?...Brad Cockmore?...Bob Crunt?''

"I liked the idea of doing something about porn, but mainstream porn had been done and done very well by Paul Thomas Anderson in Boogie Nights. So no point in doing that. I'm not trying to go in there and throw my d*ck down and be all like, 'I'm better than Paul Thomas Anderson.' We all know I'm not." -- Kevin Smith


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