November 17, 2005

Woody Allen on genius

There is an excellent interview with Woody Allen in the new issue of Vanity Fair (the one with Kate Moss on the cover). I wanted to transcribe what I think is the best bit:

“The real, real genius is in very few people in any art form, in any business, in any area…. When ore younger you’ve got decades to make films end so you strive for greatness, because you haven’t proven, yet, that’s not going to happen... But I feel that level of greatness is just not in me. Because I see no evidence of it after a very, very fair try. It may just not be in the genes… and I can live with it because you know, what can I do?”

“That’s a depressing thought,” the writer says to Woody.

“No, it’s not a depressing thought. What happens is that – let’s say I’m in a room with Bergman or Kurosawa, and they have achieved this [greatness], but ultimately they’re going to the same place I’m going to. You understand that art doesn’t save you. It doesn’t save me. So then I think to myself, What’s the value?… It’s not that I’m losing my passport to paradise. I’m not. There are a lot of things in life I’m not going to have. I’m not going to play like Michael Jordan. I also will not make films like Kurosawa or Bergman.”

1 comment:

babs said...

I think he's being a bit self-deprecating, which is probably why I like him as a director. To be fair, to be as great as Bergman is very difficult. He doesn't quite get there, but he comes very, very near it, in some of his movies. It didn't dawn on me until I saw Deconstructing Harry in New York surrounded by 40 year old men and women that my friends and family who most of them knew Woody weren't typical. You mean, people under the age of 25 don't know who he is? OMG.