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John Sayles Quotes / Quotations

And is there a movie, whatever the genre here, that I would like to go see? If I can see the germ of that there, I'll usually take the job.
Quotation of John Sayles


And it was out in the theaters in two weeks. This is not, 'We're going to develop twenty-five and maybe one's going to get made,' so the first three things I wrote got up on the screen and, good, bad or indifferent, I got to see them on their feet.
Quotation of John Sayles


Basically, if you could get a good trailer out of the script, Roger had no objection to you making a really good movie. He liked it if you did. He liked the more cleverness and ingenuity you could bring to it. He just wasn't going to give you any more money.
Quotation of John Sayles


But compared to writing a novel, where you can be God, I did the Bay of Pigs invasion in six pages once, and there were 50,000 guys with boots that I didn't have to pay, and all those extras; we didn't have to pay them.
Quotation of John Sayles


But once I discovered that there was such a thing as a screenwriter and a director and all that, it stayed in my head as a possibility.
Quotation of John Sayles


Each time you come away, you know, you learn something. You get better at your craft.
Quotation of John Sayles


Fahrenheit 9/11 took public domain information that should have been on the news every night and put it in a film that a lot of people went to see. But still Bush has never had to answer those charges.
Quotation of John Sayles


For me the writing, when I'm going to direct it myself, is really just the first draft, and I don't change it very much; I only change it on average about two lines per movie.
Quotation of John Sayles


I always feel that there are no final victories and no final defeats. But it's true that America is in a hole right now. There are a lot of dead fish in the water.
Quotation of John Sayles


I always felt like, okay, I'm going to try to tell stories whatever way I can and it would be cool to make a movie, and tell a story that way.
Quotation of John Sayles


I certainly grew up seeing more movies and television than I read books, but when it came time to do the thing itself you don't have to hire a lot of people to sit down and write a book, so that was the story-telling medium that was available to me.
Quotation of John Sayles


I figured somebody wrote a story who had a typewriter and I thought that movies were made by the cowboys and that they just said, 'Okay, you fall off the horse this time.'
Quotation of John Sayles


I figured, 'When is that ever going to happen again?'. So I basically set out the opposite way movies are made; I set out with a budget first. I said, 'What can I do well for $40,000?'.
Quotation of John Sayles


I like to act. I work for scale. I don't have an acting agent. I'm in the book.
Quotation of John Sayles


I made it about a three-day weekend so people wouldn't have to change their clothes a lot. We didn't have an art department; we didn't have a make-up department.
Quotation of John Sayles


I never thought about being a writer as I grew up. A writer wasn't something I wanted to be. An outfielder was something to be. Most of what I know about style I learned from Roberto Clemente.
Quotation of John Sayles


I probably wouldn't have done as many as I did in one year, which I did when I was trying to raise money.
Quotation of John Sayles


I remember being out here at the Sunset Marquis, and whoever knocked on the door, I would take that picture that I was writing and I would put that in the typewriter, so when I had the meeting, they would say: 'Oh, you're working on it right now?'
Quotation of John Sayles


I take more jobs when I need more money, if I'm investing in films. I take fewer when I don't. Or if something really good comes along, I usually find a way to do a good job on it in the time that I've got.
Quotation of John Sayles


I think I got spoiled and that writing a short story and getting it published, or writing a novel and getting it published, you pretty much get to do the first, second and third draft yourself without a whole lot of interference.
Quotation of John Sayles


I've always felt like I was on the margins. Once upon a time that's what independent used to mean.
Quotation of John Sayles


If you write a movie for Roger Corman, it's going to get made. You saw it almost the next day.
Quotation of John Sayles


In a movie you have all these logistical problems; all these practical problems. But you're also going to have people come who can do things that you can't do, and you get to direct their talents.
Quotation of John Sayles


Michael Moore, whether you like him or hate him, has done something very important.
Quotation of John Sayles


My argument has always been that this is not an anti-Bush film, it's a pro-democracy film. And if Bush comes out on the wrong side of democracy, that's his problem.
Quotation of John Sayles


Not that I've always loved the movie when they finally come out, or if they ever come out-because many of them don't come out-but I've gotten to work with really good story editors and stuff like that.
Quotation of John Sayles


So it helps make me a better filmmaker or better writer when I go back into the fray on my own stuff, but it's something that I would do, even if I didn't need to; even if I didn't need the money, because I enjoy it, and you're getting to work for the movies, which is a good deal.
Quotation of John Sayles


So when I came to making movies, that's the way I wanted to do it. I didn't kind of wanting to just do one part of the process and leave it at that.
Quotation of John Sayles


The hardest thing about movie acting is that if you're playing a character who changes within the movie, you've got to do that, but you've got to do it out of sequence, because we never have gotten to shoot in sequence, and that's really, really tough.
Quotation of John Sayles


The media in America has become so cowed and compromised.
Quotation of John Sayles


There are genres I don't care for, and I've never worked in those genres, and then sometimes there are people that I haven't liked and I haven't worked for those people. But if I feel like there's a movie that I would like to go see, I'll jump into it.
Quotation of John Sayles


There was a widespread indignation in the American media. They were saying, 'How can you make a movie during an election that's about politics? What are you doing? Are you trying to influence people's lives?' To which my response was, 'Well, I hope so.'
Quotation of John Sayles


There were not fifteen people in the story department and twenty-five producers and stuff. And Roger had produced 1,000 movies and directed a couple of hundred, and their comments were always very, very specific.
Quotation of John Sayles


They would be right to the page; right to the moment. They wouldn't be: 'We have problems with the second act!'
Quotation of John Sayles


Those are fun, especially if they're going to shoot them in four weeks, because you know they're not going to mess with anything you do, so it can be very imaginative.
Quotation of John Sayles


To this day, I get rewrite offers where they say: 'We feel this script needs work with character, dialogue, plot and tone,' and when you ask what's left, they say: 'Well, the typing is very good.'
Quotation of John Sayles


We just said, 'Okay, you're in the movie. Bring what you would bring for a three-day weekend and I hope you like the way you look in it because once you're on camera, that's your wardrobe.' But it worked; it worked and we were very surprised.
Quotation of John Sayles


Well, acting is cheap; I knew all these actors who weren't in the Screen Actors Guild yet, and it happened that they were all just about thirty years old.
Quotation of John Sayles


What I often find is it has to do with, is we need somebody who's in one scene to intimidate somebody who's over 5'10' and there I am on the set.
Quotation of John Sayles


When I was really young I didn't know that there was such a thing as a screenwriter. I wrote stories.
Quotation of John Sayles


With Roger, it would be: 'On Page 67, we think this is a little quick to have another attack of Piranhas, so could you put it off until Page 69?'
Quotation of John Sayles


You get to say, 'Here's my philosophical idea about what the costume should like,' and the costume designer comes and gives you choices and sometimes they're all good, and I say, 'What do you think?' and they pick the right thing.
Quotation of John Sayles


 
 
John Sayles Events

Venice Film Festival 2009 - 'Great Directors' photocall

2009-09-03

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