Posted on Thursday, January 13th, 2011 by Peter Sciretta
I want to highlight a couple quotes from The Social Network director David Fincher, who did a great interview with my friend Quint from AICN. The first quote is about the value of being called “The Best Movie of the Year”, the second is about the dislike for movie studio produced EPK (electronic Press Kit) materials for home video releases, and lastly his efforts to shoot the film on Harvard property and how accuracy meant more to him than getting a cool shot.
On being the Best movie of the year:
To me the notion that there’s one movie at the end of the year that is “the best movie” is kind of an absurd notion. I mean, it’s “the movie of the year” for Tuesday nights and “the movie of the year” for Friday nights, you know what I mean? Let’s hope that movies are something more than just theme park rides. Let’s hope that movies are a part of our cultural relevance and more akin to literature than to music. I hope the movies aren’t as disposable as contemporary hit radio would like to make music.
Amen. On EPKs:
That’s like EPK (Electronic Press Kit) stuff. Honestly… So few actors that I would want to hear from want to be a part of that because it’s just another sales tool. You go, “Let’s not.” I always find the stuff that makes me intrigued about how movies get made was when you hear people talk about how they didn’t get what they wanted, but it ended up being more interesting. I find that’s the most valuable learning stuff.
I also despise the usual EPK documentaries. The documentary on The Social Network Blu-ray is fantastic, almost in the same league as the documentary on Paul Thomas Anderson’s Magnolia. On wanting to shoot at Harvard:
You know, like I was really hell bent on shooting at Harvard because it was going to make my life so much easier. Every location in the script, every location that (Ben) Mezrich was talking about was all five blocks from each other! If we shot on location at Harvard we probably could have made this movie in six weeks! But it was, “No, you’ve got to shoot at Johns Hopkins for the exteriors.” It ended up being so much more complicated because we couldn’t be in one place shooting it all. Granted, Harvard’s a big business, it’s not just an amazing institution of higher learning. And this is one thing I never got into the movie, but I really wanted to was you drive past The Coop and you see all those Harvard sweatshirts and all the Harvard sweatpants and all the Harvard cups and all the Harvard mousepads and the Harvard visors and you go, “Wow! It’s beyond an institution, it’s a brand.”
I’m sure a lesser filmmaker would have reasoned that the real-life geography of the locations didn’t as matter as much as the storytelling, but Fincher is obviously obsessed with the details.
You can read the whole interview on AICN.