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Talking Scumbag Financiers and Fighting for Your Creative Vision with Director Joe Carnahan

A new web series called Hollywood Trenches from CineFix has been talking with director Joe Carnahan, and while we’ve already shared 2 videos from the conversation, the 7-part series has finally come to a close. In the refreshingly candid and honest interview, which features fellow director Jack Perez asking the questions, Carnahan talks about everything from creative control, to movie financing, and finally to his experience working on, and finally quitting, Mission Impossible III. Check out the videos embedded below.

Here is a description of the interview from the YouTube page:

In this 7-part series, acclaimed director Joe Carnahan (The Grey, Narc, Smokin’ Aces, The A-Team) joins indie/cult-director Jack Perez (Some Guy Who Kills People, Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus, La Cucaracha, The Big Empty) for a super candid and sometimes shocking in-depth discussion on the enormous challenges and obstacles faced by filmmakers in Hollywood.

From navigating temperamental actors, interfering producers, and scumbag would-be financiers to raising indie-money and fighting to get your vision on-screen, this series reveals what it takes to survive and succeed in the sometimes surreal and often infuriating movie business.

Part 1 — Manipulation, Professionalism, and Doing It Yourself

Part 2 — Awesome Movies That Never Got Made

Part 3 — Superhero Movies and the Future of Hollywood

Part 4 — 98% Hustle, 2% Filmmaking, and Creative Control

Part 5 — Fight for Your Creative Vision

Part 6 — Hollywood Scumbags

Part 7 — Tom Cruise and the Lost Mission Impossible 3

Carnahan is a stand-up guy and it’s great to hear someone who is genuinely passionate about the work be really honest about his career and the state of the industry. I think the most refreshing part is the fact that he admits he’s not the most creative guy, but he’s not going to let anyone outwork him. As with anything (not just filmmaking), putting in the hard work is part of what makes people rise to the top.

In a post written by Ain’t Them Bodies Saints director David Lowery, a particularly insightful piece of advice is offered up courtesy of Steven Soderbergh: talent + perseverance = luck. There tends to be a fair amount of jealousy surrounding successful people in society, particularly those in the entertainment industry, but all of these people are linked by a common desire to succeed, and the ones who stay at the top are those who put the time in.

It’s also not just about hard work, it’s about learning how to listen to the people around you, and know that you’re not always going to have every answer. As Carnahan says in the interview, “I don’t have all the answers all the time, I just hope I have the right ones when I need them.”

What do you guys think?

Link: CineFix — YouTube Channel


We’re all here for the same reason: to better ourselves as writers, directors, cinematographers, producers, photographers... whatever our creative pursuit. Criticism is valuable as long as it is constructive, but personal attacks are grounds for deletion; you don't have to agree with us to learn something. We’re all here to help each other, so thank you for adding to the conversation!

Description image 16 COMMENTS

  • The guy interviewing was the part that made me happy, at least he isn’t /that/ interviewer who sits there asking bad questions and can’t even relate to anything being talked about.

  • Fantastic playlist. Thanks for sharing!

  • Having literally wrapped photography on my first feature yesterday, this really was an interesting watch. Films can destroy you and nobody really understands how much a director is actually carrying to work every day. So much of what you want to do is continually ripped away by misfortune, bad weather, asshole agents and actors losing focus but you have to set an example, stick a smile in your face, be responsive, energetic, engaged and take everyone with you. It’s brutal.

    • Absolutely – nobody sees everything you went through to accomplish the shoot, regardless of the quality of the end result.

      Congratulations on finishing the feature. Looking forward to it! :)

      • Joe, this comment has nothing to do with this article, but I just wanted to say that you guys rock. I am constantly impressed with the regular updates and excellent information. I really wish continued success for you guys and the future of this site.

        • We appreciate the support. :) We’re always trying to find a wide range of diverse topics to share.

  • This has to be one of the best post I’ve seen on At least for a while.

  • I’m 2 minutes into the first clip and I’m already thinking “There’s no way I’m not watching all these clips today”. THis guy is a boss! Thanks for this post Joe!

  • They look like Gary Oldman and Simon Pegg!

  • Very Very good. Informative,entertaining and Honest. These 2 guys are still fairly young and just hitting on all cylinders and they sound like they have been through the Ringer already. But also sound like they have listened and learned from what they have gone through. That truly is the way to success.
    Some of these Scumbags Joe talks about may have the cash at the end of the day, but the only ones they really fool are themselves.
    Thanks for a GREAT interview !

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