From Faber & Faber's Projections: Tod Lippy's interview with Wes Anderson
Can you talk about having Jim Brooks as a mentor during your rewrites of
the Bottle Rocket script?
With Jim Brooks, we went through what seemed at the time to be, like, a
year of work, which in fact when I look back on it was only three or four
months. But three or four months of really intense scrutiny, which we
weren't prepared for, and which forced us to kind of learn how to make a
screenplay. We were really overconfident about the material - we were set in
our ways after having written one screenplay. Sometimes I really don't
understand how Jim saw that we could make a movie out of it. The first
thing he heard was a five-hour reading. For a caper-comedy. That's
something that probably shouldn't be so epic.
But he was a combination of patient and properly aggressive to get us
figure stuff out. Especially with me. And now, when we're writing, that's
what we think of, this stuff we learned from Jim. He'll often say, "Well,
the way I learned it was like this" - I mean, he probably invented the way
he says he learned it - but that's kind of the thing we do now, we often
think of the kind of "rules" that we learned from Jim. How to make the
story work, and what you need to do as far as the audience is concerned.
New York Film-Makers on Film-making
edited by Tod Lippy
faber and faber
© copyright Tod Lippy, 2000