Sunday, October 1, 2023

Woody Allen: “In the USA, people are constantly offended, and the press loves these people”

Woody Allen continues to tour Europe. If your previous movie, Rifkin’s Festivalwas filmed in San Sebastián and presented in Zinemaldia, with stroke of luck has returned to the city that gave him such good results Midnight in Paris. Europe has become an artistic refuge for Allen. After the outbreak of “Me Too” and his adopted daughter’s renewed accusation of sexual abuse – an accusation for which he was never brought to trial due to lack of evidence – the United States stopped producing his films…and releasing them. His previous work is still unknown in his country stroke of luck “which hits Spanish cinemas on September 29th” seems to suffer the same fate despite the good reviews thriller with a touch of humor that has a lot to do with it Match point.

Nevertheless, Allen confessed at the last Venice Festival that, at 87 years old, he had not lost hope that “some madman” would give him the money to shoot an idea for a film in his city of New York. It doesn’t look like it’s going to happen. Nevertheless, he holds no grudge against the USA and emphasizes how much they have always loved and supported him, even in films that he felt he did not deserve.

At a meeting with a small group of journalists at the Venice Film Festival after the good reviews of stroke of luckAllen – who will play with his jazz band in Barcelona this Monday, the 18th – explained that he has always “loved the USA very much”. “They were always very nice, critics and audiences in the US overlooked the flaws in my films when I started and only wrote about the good things. I had a lot of success with American audiences, but it’s true that in Europe they immediately supported me. As soon as I shot my first film in France, in Italy and all over Europe, they treated me like one of their own, and over the years when I made a film that wasn’t well received in the US, I would shoot it in European countries they things hello well. It was very interesting. In Europe I felt more and more affection that came from the heart,” he emphasizes.

Woody Allen always reacts like a comedian. First he gives the serious part and then concludes with a final gag. He shows this when he analyzes what he believes is the reason for the European affection that he has not experienced in the United States in recent years. “People always ask me that and I can only think of two things. The first is that in the beginning I loved European films so much and watched them so many times that they get into your blood and that’s what comes out later, that influence. The second possibility is that my films gained something through translation, that they became better,” he concludes his joke.

He laughed at almost everything in his scripts, and although he believes people are more offended now, he assures that he has no problem removing phrases from his scripts if he feels they have crossed the line has. He even admits that he has done it on occasion: “Yes, I think it happened to me. If I’m writing or making a movie or even filming it and I see that something I thought was funny isn’t funny but just offensive, I cut it from the script. Now, considering that it’s an important point in the film’s script, and someone tells me that they think people won’t like it, but I think it’s honest and important to the film, then that’s me Nevermind. But there are times when I think something is smart and funny and brilliant but it isn’t. “It’s stupid or just plain offensive, and we’ll put it down.”

When I’m writing or making a movie or even filming it and I see that something I thought was funny isn’t funny but just plain offensive, I cut it from the script.

Although he removes phrases when they are offensive, he believes the climate makes everything offensive. “I don’t know if this is happening here, but in the United States we are going through a time when people are constantly offended. Look what happened to Bradley Cooper’s nose – the actor was accused of anti-Semitism for using a prosthetic nose maestroâ€. Please give me a break. You will always find some strong opinions, a small minority who will express their opinion and be offended. It’s such a stupid thing… there was no trace of anti-Semitism. No sign. But there are always people who are offended, and the press loves these people because they suddenly have a controversy. It was boring to write about, but it goes from a simple film to a conversation about anti-Semitism… And a lot of things like that happen in the US,” he says.

The matter of Bradley Cooper’s nose seems to be a minor matter to him. In Annie Hall He appeared embossed with all the stereotypes of Orthodox Jews to show how people imagine them. That’s not a scene I would cut from the script now. “I would do it anyway. You have a lot of time to think if something is offensive. I see it in the Daily newspapers (Material from every recording day of a shoot), in the edit, in the first cut of the film. If I see something offensive and my editor agrees with me if it’s something cruel or offensive, we can live without that scene. People pay a lot of money to see a movie. Too much money. My daughter was visiting recently Megalodon 2, This shark movie, and admission was $27. “I went to the movies for 27 cents on the dollar.”

“Young people can’t afford to go to the cinema. People pay to see films, and I’m not interested in giving them a bad time, or making them leave the screening, or making them feel like they’ve been insulted and that something terribly offensive is happening is. But I also don’t want to keep thinking that this or that is offensive. That African Americans won’t like this. That women won’t like that. That the Jews won’t like the other person. Otherwise the Asians won’t like it. You know, being politically correct,” he says.

He denies that being a film director is hard work, on the contrary. “A hard job is being a taxi driver or someone who breaks stones on the road, those are hard jobs. Or a teacher. It’s not show business. You come in in the morning, they offer you a coffee, everyone wants to do something for you. You tell them what to do and they do it. If you tell them something is wrong, they repeat it. Or you thank them. I’ve always been lazy. I’ve never been someone like Spielberg or Scorsese, who are still looking for perfection at ten o’clock at night. That was never important to me. I finish at six in the afternoon. I don’t care if the last recording wasn’t good, it will be good enough. “I go home, eat dinner and watch the basketball or baseball game,” he says.

As if that wasn’t enough, you finish a film in “six months, eight at the most” and “there’s nothing to do” the rest of the year. “You could say that someone who has worked in film as a director, writer or actor has never worked a full day in their life. I feel like I’ve never completed a day’s work like a man who goes to the office and sits at a desk all day. So no, this job requires no energy, at most a little energy, but nothing more.”

I’ve always been lazy. I’ve never been someone like Spielberg or Scorsese, who are still looking for perfection at ten o’clock at night. I was finished at six in the afternoon, no matter how I felt

Even if it’s not one of his greatest critical successes – despite Penelope Cruz’s Oscar – Allen always sets an example of it Vicky Cristina Barcelona. He considers it one of his great works, but above all he considers it one of the best film experiences in his memory. One that showed him that you don’t have to know a language to be moved. “There are moments in this film with Penelope and Javier Bardem that I still don’t know what they are saying. They improvised and started shouting and arguing at each other. I don’t speak a word of Spanish, but I could tell it was wonderful. “I don’t have to know the language to know that the emotion was there,” he remembers.

In stroke of luck The subject of chance comes up, of course, but Allen knows that the more money you have, the more likely you are to be lucky: “The rich, of course, are very lucky. The most important thing in life is health. The second most important thing is knowledge. And the third most important thing is money. It is important in life to have enough money. “You don’t have to be rich, but you have to have enough money to survive.”

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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