A entrevista conta com outros momentos muito interessantes, que revelam um Carpenter mais amadurecido - a "velhice" é assunto recorrente - e (ainda mais) desiludido com Hollywood. Cito em baixo as que são, para mim, as passagens mais significativas (ilustradas pelas melhores fotos da rodagem de "The Ward", recentemente publicadas aqui).
What was the reason behind that hiatus?
Burned out! That’s it. I thought “I can’t take this anymore. I don’t want to do this anymore.” I kinda had a bug when my last movie tanked pretty big time. I thought to myself “Why am I doing this. I am killing myself with this.”
You have been so hands-on with all of your films. Is there a part of the film-making process that you prefer?
Being on set. I live for that.
Another project that you are attached to is ‘Fangland.’ Can you talk a little bit about that?
It is a novel that has been turned into a script and we are still trying to get a good screenplay out of it.
How did you first cross paths with that project?
Somebody at the office said “Would you like to do this?” I read it and I thought it had a very interesting idea. So, now we will just have to see if we can get it there.
Originally the script had been described as a modernized version of ‘Dracula.’ Right now, vampires are all the rage and you have tangled with the undead before. Maybe this is a little premature but, what is your vision for the film?
Well, it is not about a vampire. We’re changing that. Vampire movies always work. They are always fun but they are a little over-saturated right now.
Another one is ‘L.A. Gothic’ …
Which has undergone a title change. I actually have a copy of the script which I am supposed to read this weekend and we will see where we go from there.
Horror is a lot different than it used to be. What are your thoughts on the current state of that genre?
Horror is always the same. It just changes with the culture and changes with the technology. The stories are always the same. There are just two basic stories in horror, two simple ones — evil is outside and evil is in here [pointing to his heart]. That is basically it. There are a lot of good horror movies being made right now, there have been a lot of good movies that have been made, and a lot more probably will be made.
3D and remakes are two subjects that I am sure you get asked about all the time. As a director/creator, do you think that these are signs that the Hollywood machine is running low on original ideas and do you think fans will eventually look to alternative mediums for their entertainment?
Hollywood already ran out of original ideas years ago, except for a very few films that come along that try something new. A lot of the stuff that they program is not new anymore. 3D is another way that the technology has evolved. Look at when the original ‘Toy Story’ came out. That was a huge step in storytelling. 3D has evolved in that same way. Personally, I don’t really know. I know one guy in Hollywood, Jeffery Katzenberg, says that soon every movie will be made in 3D. I don’t believe it. I went through the first 3D craze, I was there! I wore those glasses and I remember it! It died!
What are your thoughts on remakes, as a director who has directed a remake and had a few of his films remade?
It is the tradition of Hollywood. It has been done a lot. They remade ‘The Maltese Falcon’ four or five times. They remade ‘A Star Is Born’ … and they will be doing that again. Nowadays, for genre movies, it is so difficult to advertise for films, there is so much clutter, so many advertisements and so many people wanting your dollar that producers and studios try to cut through all of that with something that you will recognize. A title that maybe you heard of when you were young or your siblings watched it or you have heard of it but haven’t seen it, they cut through with it a new version. So, it can penetrate this almost impenetrable wall of attracting people and getting them into a theater. All of this stuff is about commerce. All about commerce. It is all about money. You see these sequels being made and people line up to see them. If no one went to see them, they wouldn’t be making them!
Are there any young directors out there that really make you stand up and take notice of their work?
Lots and lots. I like David Fincher’s work a lot. I think he is very talented. He is REALLY good!
What is the best piece of advice that someone has given you along the way in your career?
It was probably from my dad. He said “Opportunity will come, just be ready for it.”
What about the flip-side of that question? What advice would you give to someone just starting out in this new age of film making?
You have a lot of advantages that I didn’t have. You can actually go to film school without actually going, by buying movies on DVD and watching the special features and interviews with directors where you can see what they did behind-the-scenes. You can really see how it works. You have equipment and technology now that allows you to make a film, cut it yourself with computers and show it. All that is stopping you, at this point, is you. The two of you can go out and make a movie starting today if you want to.
Any other projects that your fans should be aware of?
I have a couple different things in development. I have a movie called ‘The Prince,’ which I am really happy about. It is not really a horror film, it is more of an action film. Hopefully, I will get that going. I am ambivalent about work. I will do it if it comes along. I don’t like to get up too early in the morning! [laughs] But I am getting close to the age where I can just say [with his arms outstretched and middle fingers in the air] “Fuck this! Goodbye!” and kick back! [laughs] Every time that the NBA starts its season, I get less and less interested. I am more interested in basketball! I am a basketball addict!
Do you have any last words for you fans before we let you go?
Simply, thanks for the memories.
(Obrigado ao Tiago Costa pela dica.)