25 March, 2009

Charlie Kaufman, screenwriter-director, interview

The State Journal-Register, Springfield, Il:

"Kaufman didn’t care if he failed as a director because “in my writing I came to the sort of conclusion awhile ago that the only way to do anything interesting is to not see failing as a negative thing.”

The only way to avoid failure is to do something that you know how to do already, he ways, “which is, as a writer, completely uninteresting.”

“I always take projects that I don’t know how to do. I always go in and say, ‘This is what I’m going to try to do; I haven’t done this before.’ And I accept the fact that it may not come out well. And this is a continuation of that.

“I think we see failure as a negative thing in our culture, and I don’t see it as a negative thing. I think failure is a sign that you tried to do something that is challenging and you didn’t know how to do, and that to me is a good thing. That’s bold, that’s adventurous ... you can actually come up with something new and interesting, which you can’t if you keep doing the same thing over and over again.”

To him, “success and failure are irrelevant” — which is why “I don’t write for an audience in mind, ever. I don’t ever think about an audience, because then I’d be writing what I think they want me to write, so that I can be successful, as opposed to writing what I feel, which is brave and risky.”"

Article in full

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