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“Fuck The Departed": Christopher Doyle On Franchises & What It Takes To Be A Filmmaker

by Kevin Jagernauth
June 10, 2013 3:27 PM
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Geez, turn Christopher Doyle and you'll get a good quote. The famed and cinematographer is nothing if not candid about this feelings on movies, prone to pouring his particular brand of acid on stuff like "Life Of Pi" or "Lincoln." Dropping into Canada last week to speak at Toronto's TIFF Bell Lightbox he wasted no time in giving the audience an evening full of notable quotables to bring home with them.

“Fuck 'The Departed' (I love you, Marty),” was just one of the nuggets of worldly wisdom provided by Doyle (who has previously shared his distaste for that remake), as he proceeded to give almost Vincent Gallo-esque advice to budding moviemakers.  “I wanna make films. How should I do it?” Doyle said, repeating a familiar question he receives: “Have you been in jail recently? Have you fucked a black woman? Have you been in a car crash? If you haven’t had any of these experiences then what the fuck are you going to talk about?” Uhhh, okay.

Meanwhile, the current studio culture is struggling from a dearth of quality because, Doyle believes, there is simply no creativity to be found. "That’s why there are so many franchises, bceause nobody is living. Nobody is living, therefore they think filmmaking is about filmmaking," he said. "The French have told us how big a mistake that is.” 

So what else does Doyle have going on? Well, he now has an Mandarin speaking alter ego named Dù Kefeng, which Doyle explains thusly: “I’m a Chinese with a skin disease.” Never change, Chris, never change. [Filmmaker Magazine]

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  • Sean | June 11, 2013 1:27 PMReply

    I can't take seriously a man who thought it was a good idea to shoot a remake of Psycho.

  • Rob | June 11, 2013 8:49 AMReply

    I agree with him that it seems like there is no creativity in Hollywood anymore, but can this guy write a screenplay? Probably not. Then all I can say is that he is just contributing to the problem.

  • Robert | June 11, 2013 5:24 PM

    Well he has written a sceenplay before.

  • Smeepalapeep | June 11, 2013 12:37 AMReply

    Props to Christopher Doyle for being outspoken and honest. You just cut it to shit.

  • genga13 | June 10, 2013 10:46 PMReply

    I'm completely behind Doyle all the way on this one. And while what he says is absolutely true, I also agree that of all the things he discussed, why just quote his disgust with the current slate of filmmaking? I'm sure there are so much more interesting and insightful commentary he's given in his appearance.

    Also, I'm pretty sure there are so many people out there that will just put on the hate on his comments. Judging from what negativity has been commented on? Just reading the vitriol comes off as misinformed, misguided and uneducated. Someone made a comment about Doyle making movies no one understands BUT the specific arthouse filmmakers themselves would understand.

    Well, if you don't understand it, no one asked you to watch it. Obviously it isn't made to please you and you have every right to not see it. You can stick to your Ratner/Bay productions if that is what you prefer.

    There are those of us who actually appreciate thoughtful, thought provoking films with a little substance to it. I'm not always about big blockbusters with big explosions and big car stunts. Or the over bloated cast of A-listers spitting all things clever so they can force a laugh out of you.

    Every once in a while there is room for something small and intimate. Some of us that enjoy those want time away from the big, dumb, loud movies that are cranked out from the hollywood assembly line.

  • Peter | June 10, 2013 7:40 PMReply

    Very disappointed with you guys, this is just garbage journalism. Doyle spoke for more than an hour and all you can pick up are a bunch of 'sensational' throw away lines. Of course things that are important and inspiring are left out.

    I expect a lot better from Indiewire.

  • 34525352 | June 10, 2013 7:01 PMReply

    Why do you guys publish every incendiary line out of this guy's mouth -- as if it's news? Why not pull some quotes from the recent Jon Voight interview and make it into a story? Because it isn't news and no one cares. The same is true of this, but The Playlist just can't resist the obnoxious headlines

  • j | June 10, 2013 5:51 PMReply

    This guys a choad big time the reason for their being no creativity in hollywood .Is because of choads like this.Who like to sling mudd from the sidelines and make projects that only they understand and.Get upset when people bash on there films because they really do suck as liberial minded .As people like this guy are the reality is they are the most single minded people on the planet whose world don't exsist past;their over inflated egos.Theres no leadership nowadays what so ever.

  • Mr Anonymous | June 10, 2013 4:44 PMReply

    Who the hell is this guy? He sounds like a fruitcake! He needs to get back on his medication and maybe people will start taking him seriously. All i can do is laugh.

  • greg w. locke | June 10, 2013 4:51 PM

    he's one of the all-time great cinematographers. and he's always been this way. work in the film industry and you'll come across a whole lot of people who are always playing the kiss ass game. doyle always keeps it real. i hear he can be hard to work with, but he always puts out a GREAT looking product. i like that he can only be honest.

  • a guy named joe | June 10, 2013 4:19 PMReply

    He's abrasive and he's honest. And he's right.

  • jay | June 10, 2013 4:16 PMReply

    Doyle = Werner Herzog's bipolar kid brother.

  • BEEF | June 10, 2013 4:08 PMReply

    I have been in jail, had sex with a black woman and been in a car crash ... I also wrote a script, Doyle, wanna shoot it? I've met your creative criteria! Plus, I have a personality disorder!

  • Bodhi1701 | June 10, 2013 4:37 PM

    Wow. Your name is Beef. And ya know what, I not only want to see this movie, I want to see a movie about you and Christopher Doyle making this movie. Your name's Beef...

  • Frank | June 10, 2013 3:50 PMReply

    No, Christopher Doyle, fuck you. What did you shoot lately that has any merit?

  • Noah | June 10, 2013 4:40 PM

    Say what you will about The Limits of Control but everyone agreed that Doyle's cinematography was stunning. What difference does it make if he isn't as prolific as other DPs? His body of work speaks for itself. Geez, God forbid anyone says anything interesting without being shot down by some nobody on the internet.

  • yer | June 10, 2013 3:48 PMReply

    *yawn* Christopher Doyle's shtick is getting old. Considering he had a fallout with Wai and no longer shoots his films he's of little worth while guys like Deakins and Richardson continue to turn out fantastic work year after year.

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