Akira Kurosawa’s The Hidden Fortress has long been cited as an influence on George Lucas’s Star Wars. An avid fan of Kurosawa’s, Lucas would eventually work with the Japanese auteur, executive producing the international version of his 1980 Kagemusha. In this excerpt from a 2001 interview, conducted for the Criterion Collection and available on our special edition of The Hidden Fortress, Lucas talks about the inspiration he took from the work of Kurosawa, which he first encountered in film school in the sixties.
Bringing the Grit to Philippine Cinema
For Philippine master Lino Brocka, casting a mix of nonprofessional and professional actors was key to achieving his brand of unvarnished naturalism.
This Kiss: Filming an Intimate Moment in The Virgin Suicides
What goes into staging the perfect on-screen kiss? Director Sofia Coppola and actors Kirsten Dunst and Josh Hartnett look back on shooting a passionate make-out session in The Virgin Suicides.
“Perfect Imperfection”: Neil Young Improvises Dead Man
Jim Jarmusch filmed Neil Young recording the score for his 1995 revisionist western. Watch a bit of the never-released footage here.
Discovering the Jazzy Sounds of Paul Whiteman
Musician Michael Feinstein talks about discovering Paul Whiteman, the wildly popular bandleader who stars in the early-Technicolor musical King of Jazz.
Playing with Color and Light in Women in Love
Cinematographer Billy Williams talks about his experience creating the lush images and expressive lighting in Ken Russell’s boldly stylized adaptation of Women in Love.