Sometimes people ask me if the length of time it took for me to make the film had to do with working with actors with Down's Syndrome. This was not the case. Even though the film took many years to make much of the delay were technical issues. What is it was actually shot in a total of twelve days which was spread over several years. Twelve days is actually a very short amount of shooting days for a feature film. The most important thing about working with an actor weather they have Down's Syndrome or not is if they have enthusiasm. Everyone in I worked with had incredible enthusiasm so the were all great to work with
We shot It is Fine! while I was still completing What Is It? This is partly why What Is It? took a long time. I feel It Is Fine! will probably be the best film I will have anything to do with in my entire career.
DO YOU REWATCH YOUR MOVIES OR PERFORMANCES AT ALL? Usually not. Every once in a while I will. For example the only time I ever saw Back to the Future was in 1985 when I paid to see it at the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood. I had been in Tennessee working on At Close Range when they had the cast and crew screening so I had to wait to see it when I got back to LA. For most of my career I will have seen a film when it comes out and then not see it again later. There are some exceptions. I have seen Orkly Kid, River's Edge, Rubin and Ed, What is it?, Charlie's Angels, Willard, Beowulf, and Alice in Wonderland multiple times. Usually now I really only watch myself in a film when I am doing the sound re-recording work for it or if there is a premiere for it. Otherwise my interest in watching the films or myself in them has diminished.
WERE YOU ON SET AT ALL ON ANY OF THE MOVIES YOUR FATHER WAS IN WHEN YOU WERE A KID? Yes. I was not on all the time, but I did visit the sets for both Diamonds Are Forever and Chinatown. I was in the Los Angeles Chinatown on the set the day the shot the climactic scene with the Faye Dunaway character being shot. I was there in the day and remember them still putting up the signs to make it look like the 1930's. I went in to the trailer where my father was playing a chess game with Roman Polanski and briefly met him. I was on the set of the Gunsmoke TV show when I was even younger and remember being very interested in how the sets were constructed and how that worked for the illusion of what was bing shot. I was actually more interested in that than in what was being shot.
YOU'VE SHOWN YOUR FILMS OUTSIDE OF THE STATES AS WELL. HOW HAS THE REACTION IN EUROPE COMPARED TO WHAT YOU'VE SEEN HERE? Spontaneous discussions and even arguments sometimes erupt amongst audience members with each other during the Q&A session for What Is It? I consider this to be positive as it means people are having strong thoughtful reactions to the film. As stated above the way that I am theatrically distributing these films that in this time is a more unusual fashion, but 100 years ago it would be the norm and it would be called "Vaudeville".
, Crispin Glover, Brattle Theatre, Big Slide Show