Perhaps the proper way to go about writing up this fascinating conversation between directors Joe Carnahan (The Grey, The A-Team) and Jack Perez (The Big Empty, Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus) is to do so after all seven parts have been released online. Unfortunately we're freakin' hooked after two parts of this thing, and we can't wait any longer.
For their first 17 minutes, Carnahan and Perez primarily talk about the difficulties of shooting a big-budget movie in Hollywood and how the more money that's involved often limits the creative process. "You put an ungodly amount of pressure on someone, and I also think it's up to us as filmmakers to push back and say I don't want that responsibility," Carnahan says. "I don't want that because it absolutely constricts, like a f**king python, the creative process."
The above comment came after Carnahan cited the difficulties Carl Rinsch has been having on 47 Ronin, alluding that taking on a film with an enormous budget is too much pressure, especially for a young up-and-comer like Rinsch. "Carl Rinsch, who's in the situation on the samurai film. Carl's a lovely guy and an extraordinarily talented guy -- he never should've been given $200 million to make a samurai film," Carnahan says. "He should've been given $3 million and you figure it out."
Carnahan and Perez delve deeper into big-budget moviemaking in part two of their conversation, where the focus quickly turns to why Carnahan dropped out of directing Mission: Impossible III after working on the thing for 15 months. There's some interesting little nuggets he drops in here, like how his version of Mission: Impossible III was a lot closer to Ghost Protocol in that it also was about the entire team shutting down, and that taking on The A-Team was a direct result of him feeling like he had unfinished business after ditching M:I:III. In fact Carnahan even admits he "couldn't give a sh*t about' The A-Team -- he just wanted to see if he could make a "big, f*ck-off action franchise," adding, "I didn't get to do this on Mission: Impossible, and I wanted to see if I had this skill set."
The director would return to MIssion: Impossible III throughout, with one of the odder moments coming when Carnahan admitted to filming himself telling Tom Cruise that he'd be dropping out of directing the third Mission: Impossible movie. "I've only looked at that tape one time. It's horrifying," he says. "It doesn't even seem like me. I literally thought this was the collapse of something integral to me. Like that was it. So I just thought, why not commemorate it by videotaping yourself. Let's actually videotape you doing a faceplant." He later adds, "Had I stuck with [Mission: Impossible III], I would've put a gun in my mouth because I was not happy."
Carnahan is one of the most candid filmmakers working today. He speaks from the gut, and you can tell he's overflowing with drive. I've always respected the guy because of how hard he works to share his untainted creative vision with the world, even though sometimes larger Hollywood types may try to shut that vision down. If he's working on a project, he'll show you his proof-of-concept video. If he's hit a snag on something, he'll tell you he hit a snag and probably curse out the people who wronged him along the way. He even admits to filming those people, too, probably because he'll want to use that video to feed some aspect of his psyche -- to use it as fuel on the next moviemaking adventure.
One can only imagine where the next five parts of this conversation will go, but we'll be there with bells on. You can watch the first two parts in this post, then keep an eye on CineFlix's YouTube page as it reveals another part every Friday.
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