In recent years, one of the coolest additions to the Comic-Con schedule have been the Entertainment Weekly Visionaries panels. They pair two amazing, A-list filmmakers together on the stage to just talk about movies. Two years ago it was Peter Jackson and James Cameron. Last year it was Joss Whedon and JJ Abrams. This year it was Jon Favreau and Guillermo Del Toro.

After the jump, read ten of the best things the directors behind Cowboys & Aliens, Pacific Rim, Iron Man, Pan’s Labyrinth, Elf and Hellboy had to say during the 2011 Visionaries panel.

Here are the quotes, in no particular order:

Guillermo Del Toro:

I’m addicted to friendship. I’m in this business, yes, to make movies and mostly to hang out with people I fucking adore. There’s nothing better than eating a bad pizza with Ron Perlman.

Guillermo Del Toro:

I don’t know how many years I’ll direct or be able to produce but I know one thing. The one thing I can finance is I’ll be a fan my whole fucking life.

Guillermo Del Toro speaking about similarities between he and Favreau:

We both come from sort of filmicly blue collar backgrounds. He was an actor and me as a special effects, make up effects, optical effects, animation background. Which is what I did for a living for more than ten years. And what you do is, they say if you want to ever command, learn to obey. Be a troop before you’re a general.

Guillermo Del Toro:

A lot of people who tackle big properties, they tackle them for money or career. But they don’t tackle them because they have a boner for it. I think you have to. You have to get a chubby to tackle. I think it’s very important to do things you absolutely love.

Jon Favreau on audience inconsistency:

The people in this room and the people at this convention are really comfortable with high concept films. They embrace an interesting concept because it becomes a challenge for the filmmaker to do it in a real way, a grounded way. It’s funny because there’s definitely a difference of culture where now with social media you can see reactions and when you see Cowboys & Aliens there’s only two things you hear. One is that’s awesome, that’s gonna be so cool. Or the other one is I can’t believe they’re doing that, this is offensive to me. They go see Transformers and see a trailer for Cowboys & Aliens and they’re like, no, cowboys and aliens they don’t fight each other, that’s completely implausible, they didn’t exist at the same time, this is insulting and I can’t believe Hollywood is making a movie like this so now the alien robots turn into trucks and that’s okay. That’s plausible. But you get James Bond and Indiana Jones fighting aliens, we’re crossed a line there.

Jon Favreau on high concept and the title of his movie:

I feel like all high concept movies are intrinsically ridiculous. That’s the whole idea of high concept. You’re taking a crazy situation and your bringing reality to it. That’s every high concept film. That’s every action film. A guy makes an iron suit. A guy injects himself and turns into the Hulk, trucks turn into robots. The trick with the filmmakers is you gotta make that emotionally accessible experience in something that has character arc and that you feel something. That’s the push and pull. So for me I think it’s less offensive to just say, hey, its cowboys & aliens. It’s like what Harrison Ford said to me when we were first thinking about the title. I said, a lot of people don’t like the title Cowboys & Aliens, should we change the name. He looked at me. He paused and said what the hell else you gonna call it?

Guillermo Del Toro on Pacific Rim:

It’s the most fun I’ve had in a Hollywood movie. Ever. It should be almost illegal. We are enjoying it so much. We are designing monsters all day long. Gigantic fucking monsters all day long.

Guillermo Del Toro:

I’m really a freak every place I go. I don’t quite fit in the independent scene. I don’t quite fit in the art scene. I don’t fit in the Hollywood scene. I’m a weird, strange, fat motherfucker and I plan to stay that way.

Jon Favreau on getting ahead:

Every time I’ve taken a risk it’s paid off. Maybe not in the way I thought it would. But Ive always come out of that experience knowing more and once you’re comfortable with failure then there’s nothing that can be done to you. I’ve never done cautious. Even with this movie, to hear everybody cheer for it, is wonderful because this was not the safe move. But I figured I was in a position to do something different. Because as movies get bigger, to be honest with you, they start to be the same. A lot of the summer movie this summer were versions of other things you’ve seen before and so I took a big risk. The secret is though is when it pays off its wonderful and if you fail and you’re comfortable with that you’ve just gotta keep doing it. The minute you stop taking risks though, you’re old.

Guillermo Del Toro on The Haunted Mansion:

To me, if I could live anywhere, I would live in the Haunted Mansion. All year long. It is, to me, the most beautiful piece of real estate in the world.

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