Dustin Hoffman and Rachel Weisz
Dustin Hoffman and Rachel Weisz
in Confidence.

Have Principles

Never be afraid of being fired. Stick to your guns
if you know something is right. You’ll usually be respected for
it later.

The Vision Thing

The most important thing you have going for you as
a director is your subjective world view. Don’t forget that and
don’t let others water it down. Realize that everyone will come
and try to tell you what their vision is and why it’s best. That’s
just human nature.

On Speed and Schedule

The faster the better. There are never enough hours
in a day—no matter what the budget is—to do as many set-ups as you’ll
probably want to do.  As the day progresses, start dropping things
from your list and just get what you have to get.

On Point of View

I’m an advocate for maintaining a consistent point
of view. Remember that the story doesn’t really exist until the
protagonist comes “into the room.” You can’t show something that
he doesn’t see, or else the whole consistency of the point of view
gets wrecked.

The Value of a Fresh Eye

Don’t read a script too many times because the first
time you read it as a director, that’s going to be what an
audience is going to see—whatever you reacted to the first time.

Don’t Rip off Other Directors

Every decision you make will be influenced unconsciously
by every movie you’ve ever seen… but it’s blasphemous to make references
to other films when you’re talking about shots… When you shoot something
make sure it’s primarily based on your visual history and the world
around you.