• Since his highly acclaimed debut feature, Citizen Ruth (1996), Payne has solidified his standing as one of the most savagely funny and poignantly perceptive chroniclers of contemporary American life working today, taking home Oscars for cowriting the screenplays of both Sideways (2004) and The Descendants (2011). The director’s latest film, the sci-fi-tinged Downsizing, which hits theaters on the 22nd, finds him further expanding his satirical range, imagining an overpopulated future in which people can elect to shrink themselves to a fraction of their original size. Earlier this fall, Payne dropped by our office while we were working on the new director-approved edition of his 1999 high-school-set political comedy Election, which comes out next week. Watch him take a trip to our film closet, where he sings the praises of Sophia Loren and Marcello Mastroianni in Ettore Scola’s A Special Day, cops to never having seen Robert Altman’s 3 Women, and talks about his own role in the rehabilitation of Michael Curtiz’s The Breaking Point and Luis García Berlanga’s The Executioner.


  • By Your_Friend
    December 06, 2017
    02:33 PM

    Please release CITIZEN RUTH next!! Incredible Filmmaker, and sounds like he should do a commentary or at least introduction for some other films. Seems very knowledgeable, particularly on Italian cinema.
  • By Erik Kuber
    December 06, 2017
    02:58 PM

    I'm really hoping for a Criterion version of "Sideways"...please!!
    • By Pat McCann
      December 07, 2017
      02:36 PM

      Everyone who's cool is too.
    • By Kartik
      December 16, 2017
      12:17 PM

      Yes, "Sideways" needs the Criterion treatment for sure. There is a hilarious "Actor Commentary" on the Fox DVD. It would be great to get Payne in for an interview and even a commentary. Also, updated interviews with the four leads, a new transfer, a film like this deserves it... With Election now in the collection, I'm hopeful for Sideways.
    • By Patrick
      December 18, 2017
      08:17 AM

      Gimatti and THC's commentary is also on the blu-ray.
  • By Bergmaniac
    December 06, 2017
    03:36 PM

    Alexander's remarks concerning A Special Day is spot-on. This is a "must-see" film.
  • By sebastianudo
    December 06, 2017
    10:22 PM

    Que gran director y que hermosa voz! solo quiero ver todas esas que eligio y todas las demas tambien!.
  • By johan
    December 07, 2017
    08:54 AM

    Payne is great, we're waiting for Sideways and Nebraska Criterion editions. And... where is Noah Baumbach's top 10? We need it, please!
  • By Davey32
    December 11, 2017
    12:39 AM

    I love what Payne said about L'Avventura. It will always be fresh and influential no matter how many times you see it. This is another must-see closet video!
  • By Doug C.
    December 31, 2017
    03:04 PM

    What does he say about about 1:14 - "La Prezeer?" - "I've only seen it once projected".