Oscar nominee Peter Bogdanovich is a true Hollywood legend. Starting out as an actor, he discovered a passion for directing in his late teens. He won a Grammy for Best Long Form Music Video for "Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Runnin' Down a Dream" and a BAFTA Film Award in the category of Best Screenplay for "The Last Picture Show," as well as several others.
Bogdanovich received an offer to direct his first film by B-movie mogul Roger Corman. I had the opportunity to talk to Bogdanovich about "Corman's World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel," a documentary in which directors and other associates shared their experiences working with the icon.
Do you keep in touch with Roger? Is he the same person he was back when you worked with him?
I saw him the night he got the Oscar [in 2009]. I was at his table. I was invited to be at his table when he won the Oscar. I saw him a couple of times after that. We talk on the phone every so often. We stay in touch.
There's no difference [in him]. He sounds the same on the phone, too. The only difference is his hair isn't black. It's gray. Other than that, I don't see much difference. He's very well-preserved [Laughing]. He looks great.
What do you think keeps Roger working today?
He loves it. I think he particularly likes producing. He didn't like directing. He told me as much. He likes producing. He just loves it. It's been his life and it continues to be his life. He works with [his wife] Julie. Julie and he have a great relationship. I knew them when they were dating. I first met Julie when he was dating her. They've had a hell of a good marriage. They've had four lovely kids. He's had a very productive home life.
You've also been doing a lot of acting. Do you enjoy acting more than directing?
I'm just trying to get a couple of pictures going as a director. People ask me to act in movies. I do it if I like the script and if the money is good enough.
Are you drawn to working in television more than you are movies right now?
There's an awful lot of good work being done on television. "The Sopranos" was a terrific series and I was fortunate to be a part of that. I noticed that it was a lot more interesting than most of the movies coming out at that period. A thing like "Breaking Bad," which I discovered a couple weeks of ago, is more interesting than most movies.
I think some television is more adventurous and more humanly interesting than a lot of movies being made. I'm not a big fan of superhero comic book movies. I'm just not. I have no interest in them. A lot of movies that are coming out just don't get me interested.
Tell me who you think is doing something extraordinary in Hollywood right now.
I think there's a few people like Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese. They know what they're doing. I like Wes Anderson, Noah Baumbach, and Quentin Tarantino. Those are the younger generation. I get along with them and like their films.
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Eric Shirey is the founder and former editor of Rondo Award nominated movie news websites MovieGeekFeed.com and TheSpectralRealm.com. His work has been featured on Yahoo!, DC Comics, StarWars.com, and other entertainment websites. Eric has interviewed and worked with actors like Harrison Ford, Brooke Shields, Gerard Butler, Brendan Fraser, Selena Gomez, and many more.
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