What would you ask Ben Mendelsohn?
- Dec 7 '16
"Directing is just an extension of acting, really. Like Coppola did, I like to see what the actor does. […] So some of the old-time directors were too authoritative. […] I try to turn it around and let it come from them." — on directing
"I didn't have enough time to be tough on me. I was going to put up a mirror so I could yell at the director any time I wanted."
"I know of two men that held pistols to their son's head—one in this country, and one in South America. […] So these things do happen. Anything you concoct in your imagination happens somewhere in life."
"By doing nothing. […] Start with nothing and see where it goes. Rather than going to the results, let the process take you to the result. So if you start with zero, you might end with zero." — on how he gets into a character
"I figure when that day comes, I'll know." — on if he ever thought of not working
"The thing is, it's easier to raise one hundred million dollars than three hundred, and a lot of the times, the big movies go down the drain anyway, don't they? The independent films are outside the system, really, now." — on Hollywood's shift towards big-budget films
"There was an actor that was fired and I was brought in as a replacement, and that's where I got to know Coppola." – on his role in The Godfather
"I don't know where I stand. I was thinking of maybe looking for a, you know, another party or something." — on his political views
"I turned The Judge down at first. I didn't want to play an incompetent old man that crapped all over himself. But then I thought about it and I talked about it with my wife. She's very bright. She said, 'Once you do it, you have to commit.' And I knew I did."
"Aspiring, dreaming, hopeful. [...] We were all working, but Dustin got that big thrust. He got a job working in a nuthouse dressed in white, and he would come home from the asylum every night and he had a girlfriend named Rusty. Dusty and Rusty. They'd both dress in white and she was this [gestures] much taller than he was."—on coming up as a young actor with Dustin Hoffman
"My first movie was To Kill a Mockingbird. Horton Foote had seen me in a play at the neighborhood playhouse […] and two years later, when they said, 'Who can play Boo Radley?' Horton's wife said, 'That young man we saw at the neighborhood playhouse.' "
"Brando would drive down in the jungle of Philippines in a baby blue Mercedes." — on Marlon Brando in Apocalypse Now
"They were behind Southern lines, pro-Union Republicans. And they named my grandfather Abraham Lincoln Duvall. But they were Southerners considered behind enemy lines." — on his family history
"We used real Texas rangers because they do undercover work. They're natural actors." — on Wild Horses
"I have a letter at home in my study from Brando that I cherish maybe more than my Oscar. And in that letter, he really responded to The Apostle and loved it. And I also heard that Billy Graham liked it. So I got it from the secular and I got it from the religion, so I felt very good about that." — on The Apostle
"I turned down the lead in Jaws because I wanted to play the Portuguese fisherman, but I was too young, so they gave it to Robert Shaw."
"I recorded an album with Chip Smallman that had some nice stuff in it, but for whatever reason, it's never come out. […] Johnny Cash and June Carter and Waylon Jennings helped me on that album." — on whether he recorded music after filming Tender Mercies
"I just finished a book called—on the Comanches—interesting, interesting, the Indians."
"Coppola came to my farm, parked his thing, came in. I cooked Maryland crab cakes for him, my mother's special recipe. […] He was more concerned about getting that recipe than would I do Godfather three." — on The Godfather Part III