Joachim Trier, the critically acclaimed Norwegian director of Reprise and the 2011 Cannes entry Oslo, August 31st, knows his way around cinema. From his time at film school to his many festival appearances, he's garnered the respect of his peers and has earned numerous awards. He sat down with Scott Macaulay of Filmmaker Magazine to talk about Oslo, August 31st, which just opened in theaters, and the conversation shifted to his experiences at film school, literary adaptations, and some advice for amateur filmmakers. The video of that interview is embedded below.
Something that seems to get lost on a lot of newer filmmakers is the fact that those who become successful in creative positions in the business are lovers of film. Many have an encyclopedic knowledge of all things movies, from actors, to writers, to directors. To make it in the industry as a creative (above the line), it takes incredible dedication. But above all, surrounding yourself with films, of all kinds and in all languages, is the only way to become a well-rounded filmmaker. You may not have to go to film school to learn filmmaking (part of the reason for this site's existence), but at the very least you need to be constantly watching and studying films. Not just films you think you'll like, either, because there's always a potential learning experience you can take away from every single film you can get your hands on.
It's also not enough to just be watching films, as the most creative people are students at heart, and take inspiration from paintings, novels, and all kinds of art. Being a good filmmaker is not just about learning the ropes, it's about being a well-rounded person, and Trier certainly believes it has helped him get to where he is today.
[via Filmmaker Magazine]