Hollywood is like being nowhere and talking to nobody about nothing.
The moment always comes when, having collected one's ideas, certain images, an intuition of a certain kind of development whether psychological or material one must pass on to the actual realization. In the cinema, as in the other arts, this is the most delicate moment the moment when the poet or writer makes his first mark on the page, the painter on his canvas, when the director arranges his characters in their setting, makes them speak and move, establishes, through the compositions of his various images, a reciprocal relationship between persons and things, between rhythm of the dialogue and that of the whole sequence, makes the movement of the camera fit in with the psychological situation. But the most crucial moment of all comes when the director gathers from all the people and from everything around him every possible suggestion, in order that his work may acquire a more spontaneous cast, may become more personal and, we might even say in the broadest sense more autobiographical.
It's very difficult to explain what I do. It is much more instinctive than you realize; much, much more. ... the reasons that make me interested in a subject are, how shall I say, fickle. Many times I have chosen, among three stories, one for reasons that are entirely accidental: I get up and think this one will be stupendous because the night before I had a certain dream. Or perhaps I put it better by saying that I had found inside myself reasons why this particular story seems more valid. ... I always have motives, but I forget them.
The greatest danger for those working in the cinema is the extraordinary possibility it offers for lying.
One doesn't enter groups of people simply because one wants or needs to. One has an infinite number of opportunities that occur for no particular reason. Sometimes you feel a sudden unexpected pleasure at being where you find yourself.
I always want to tell stories. But they must be stories that evolve, like our own lives. Perhaps what I seek is a new kind of story.
I have always imposed my wishes on the cameraman. Moreover, I have always picked them at the outset of their careers and, to a certain extent, have formed them myself.
When we find ourselves up against practical obstacles that can't be overcome, we must go forward. You either make the film as you can or don't make it at all.
I've always said that the actor is only an element of the image, rarely the most important. The actor is important with his dialogue, with the landscape, with a gesture but the actor in himself is nothing.
We know that under the image revealed there is another which is truer to reality and under this image still another and yet again still another under this last one, right down to the true image of that reality, absolute, mysterious, which no one will ever see or perhaps right down to the decomposition of any image, of any reality.
Don't regard my characters as symbols of a determined society. See them as something that sparks a reaction within you so that they become a personal experience. The critic is a spectator and an artist insofar as he transforms the work into a personal thing of his own.
When we say a character in my films doesn't function, we mean he doesn't function as a person, but he does function as a character that is, until you take him as a symbol. At that point it is you who are not functioning. Why not simply accept him as a character, without judging him? Accept him for what he is. Accept him as a character in a story, without claiming that he derives or acquires meaning from that story. There may be meanings, but they are different for all of us.
I think people talk too much; that's the truth of the matter. I do. I don't believe in words. People use too many words and usually wrongly. I am sure that in the distant future people will talk much less and in a more essential way. If people talk a lot less, they will be happier. Don't ask me why.
Modern life is very difficult for people who are unprepared. But this new environment will eventually facilitate more realistic relationships between people.
When a scene is being shot, it is very difficult to know what one wants it to say, and even if one does know, there is always a difference between what one has in mind and the result on film. I never think ahead of the shot I'm going to make the following day because if I did, I'd only produce a bad imitation of the original image in my mind. So what you see on the screen doesn't represent my exact meaning, but only my possibilities of expression, with all the limitations implied in that phrase. Perhaps the scene reveals my incapacity to do better; perhaps I felt subconsciously ironic toward it. But it is on film; the rest is up to you.