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I don’t consciously go out looking for themes. They attach themselves to me.
– Gillian Armstrong
I have major credibility as a hip, out-there documentary filmmaker, and I’m not going to say, ‘I’m only a drama filmmaker’ anymore.
Maybe women should leave time for themselves and their relationships and just have some fun.
I never worried about topping myself.
I was a young film student around the time of the new wave in film in the 1970s; old Hollywood was naff and over. For me, as a film student, I was going to see French and Italian cinema; American cinema was ‘Easy Rider’ and ‘Taxi Driver.’ Everything was gritty.
It often takes a couple of years to get a script right and then takes a couple of years to get financing together.
Sure, you always put some of your own experience into a film.
‘Little Women’ has interesting gender connotations. There are generations of women who love the book. But there are a lot of men who think it’s sentimental, gooey stuff.
Boys are lacking in female skills, dropping out of schools and ending up in jails and unemployed because they lack these skills.
I put on ‘Starstruck’ for my kids, and they started getting bored. I was so upset, I took it off. They preferred ‘Home Alone.’
Hollywood is hard on women.
Cable television stations in America are now producing such smart, in-depth, non-formula, character-based dramas. Film has turned more and more into big action or cartoons.
Australia is much more liberal in accepting de facto relationships than the U.S.
When I was a young filmmaker starting out, I was really snobby about all the affirmative action for women filmmakers because I felt it should be about your talent, and I made a film that won awards, and people wanted me.
I would never do a sexist script.
The question I always ask is: ‘Where are all the women directors in America?’ You know, where’s the female Martin Scorsese, the female David Lynch?
I do think the moral line you walk all the time about putting something in for the sake of the film and not being affected by people’s lives is a very tough one.
It’s really actually been pretty shoddy and appalling, the amount of local content, Australian drama, on ABC TV.
Frankly, I get sick of being considered a ‘young woman filmmaker’ rather than an individual artist, as a man would be.
There are really only a handful of directors who have a final cut clause in Hollywood. You only get that power if you’ve made a couple of hundred-million-dollar successes.
Australia has produced amazing costume designers that are unheralded.
I have worked with some of the most amazing costume designers in the world.
Maybe not many women are going to film school.
There’s nothing like a fresh scone.
We need more drama on Australian TV. We’ve actually dropped the ball on that.
Critics often say, ‘Oh she makes films about strong women’. Wrong; I make films about complex characters and the choices they make.