Wednesday, June 2, 2010

JON FAVREAU: WHAT I'VE LEARNED (the creative bits)

I've long been a fan of actor-director-writer Jon Favreau and this month, he's featured in Esquire magazine's feature "What I've Learned." Here are some of the more noteworthy bits of his knowledge in regard to creativity and the biz...:

You have to create the quiet to be able to listen to the very faint voice of your intuition.

I had a writing teacher who said, If you want to learn how to write a screenplay, read The African Queen twice.

Storytelling relies more on instinct than intellect.

You get your Charlie Parker record and play it over and over again. You play it note for note, and eventually you find your own voice.

With Swingers, there was the exuberance of youth — of finally being heard. A lot of that comes out of adolescence, from the frustration of not being heard. When you finally get the conch shell, you want to shout out as loud as you can what's on your mind. We hit a note.

We didn't have a lot of money for lighting, sets, or costumes on Swingers. But it was amazing how much music could emotionally put a perspective on a given scene. It was wall-to-wall Sinatra at first, but we couldn't afford it. When we put a Sinatra song into Elf, it was a big victory for me. I could finally afford Sinatra. And boy, does it do the trick!

People want to hear the same song sung over and over again. So it's my job as a filmmaker and storyteller to tell an inevitable story in an unexpected way.

To read the entire piece, click HERE.

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  1. Yes, Favreau is a class act and that was a great read. Thanks Anthony. (I'm hoping to have something up over the weekend)

  2. Excellent. Excellent. Especially the first, how we actually get to that quiet part of ourselves varies for instance hard rock drowns out "me" so I can hear "them". ;-D

    I hadn't realized Favreau directed so many of my favs. You're so awesome with names, Ant. Thanks for this!


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