Luckily, he was in the process of moving to France at the time, anyway. But if he had stayed in the States, I don't know how he would have handled that, because it was getting pretty crazy. I mean, a celebrity which he really did not welcome. And I can't blame him.
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A lot of things I have turned down ended up being a big embarrassment. Like that script, 'The Beaver.' I thought that was one of the worst scripts I had ever read. But everyone said, 'Ooh it's on the Black List.' Yeah, well, good for it. They're a bunch of idiots. I saw the final film, and there were no surprises.
I've stopped going to see art films because every critic gives them four stars and say things like 'masterpiece,' 'spellbinding' and 'mesmerizing.' I mean, they're doing that with my film, but I don't want to use those blurbs. Critical reviews aren't worth too much anymore because just about every film can get one or two of them.
My hat's off to documentary filmmakers. I don't know if I'm ever going back to it. You're treated like a second-class citizen at most film festivals. You take the bus while everybody else is flown first-class. If you're a feature film director, you're put in a five-star hotel, and if you're a documentary director, you stay in a Motel 6.
When I went around promoting 'Crumb,' there would be days I'd wake up in, like, Houston or Cleveland, and I'd step outside the hotel and get no idea where I was. It all looks the same: one big corporate, consumer theme park. It's all, 'Here's the Starbucks, and here's the Gap, and we'll go over to Banana Republic and the Cineplex.'
I've criticized President Bush for his failure to use his veto pen. There's plenty of blame to go around. The question is how to solve problems. It's not bailouts. What made America great? Free markets, free enterprise, manufacturing, job creation. That's how we're gonna do it, not by enlarging government.