Review

My First Movie: Twenty Celebrated Directors Talk About Their First Film

by

The
Coen Brothers. Pedro Almodovar. Mike Leigh. Anthony Minghella. Mira
Nair. Neil Jordan. Barry Levinson. Oliver Stone. Ang Lee. Stephen
Frears. These are just a few of the 20 film directors who tell the
fascinating stories behind the making of their first films in MY
FIRST MOVIE: Twenty Celebrated Directors Talk About Their First
Film. Edited by a Channel 4/UK writer and producer Stephen
Lowenstein, these talented artists open up and give us the real
lowdown behind the beginnings of what for some have been very
celebrated careers.
Beginning with their schooling and early inspirations, each
director gets pages upon pages to pontificate about some daring
choices (Stephen Frears's ability to nab a high-quality actor like
Albert Finney to star in his first film, or Oliver Stone's belief
that Salvador would be a commercial hit) and silly ones, about
financial disasters and artistic comeuppances. Included with these
more well known directors are Steve Buscemi and Gary Oldman, the
quirky actors who have directed several little-seen independent
films. Lowenstein manages to elicit some wonderfully complete
discussions from all of these filmmakers about their lives behind
the camera and off the set.
MY
FIRST MOVIE is a primer for anybody out there who is considering
following such a path. The road to Hollywood is paved with a lot of
disappointment, financial distress, and difficult personal
decisions. But sometimes reading about someone else's trauma makes
it easier for you to go through it yourself. Nonetheless, most film
fans will find these lengthy and descriptive interviews
fascinating.

Reviewed by Jana Siciliano on April 4, 2011

My First Movie: Twenty Celebrated Directors Talk About Their First Film
by

  • Publication Date: March 6, 2001
  • Genres: Memoir, Nonfiction
  • Hardcover: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Pantheon
  • ISBN-10: 0375420819
  • ISBN-13: 9780375420818