Interview with a LAMBpire: Marshall and the Movies

by AndrewEncore · August 10, 2010 · Interview With The Lambpyre, Lamb Casting · 3 Comments
This is Andrew from Encore’s World of Film & TV. You may have noticed that I’ve been unusually late with the results for the last LAMB Casting episode, but that just seems you can cast votes if you haven’t already (HERE). I’ve been thinking of ways to make the series more interesting, and decided that resuscitating an old favourite feature of mine to exist in accordance with LAMB Casting: Interview with the LAMBpire. Winners of each LAMB Casting gets an interview, and I’ve started with the most recent winner, Marshall of Marshall and the Movies who won for his recasting of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf
Andrew: Who is your favourite director? Why?
Marshall: That is tough. I love all of Martin Scorsese’s movies, and The Departed may be my favorite movie ever, but I’m going to have to say that my favorite director is Jason Reitman. After only three movies, he has proven himself capable of making incredible resonant movies, and I can’t wait to see what’s coming.
Andrew: Which Reiteman film are you most fond of?
Marshall: Up in the Air, that’s easy. It is so deep on so many different levels. There’s the whole technology and alienation theme, which is powerful. Yet at its core, the movie is about finding purpose and meaning in life – something anyone can relate to.
Andrew: Do you agree with the auteur theory (which posits that the director is the biggest creative force behind a film)?
Marshall: I do agree to a certain extent; I definitely refer to the director as if the movie belongs to them when I review of a movie. If a director is truly passionate about his film, then they are going to involve themselves in all parts of the production. Most of the directors who find awards recognition in the winter are people who do just that.
Andrew: Which directors best embody this theory for you?
Marshall: Probably Quentin Tarantino, if only because he jumps up and down wildly with enthusiasm for his movies as if he were nine years old.
Andrew: Annette Bening was one of the actors you chose for your winning LAMB Casting Entry. Is there any type of role you’d like to Annette tackle that she hasn’t so far?
Marshall: Really raunchy comedy – The Kids Are All Right doesn’t count because she in essence played Carolyn Burnham from American Beauty. It should be something tasteful (I’m not telling her to star in the latest spoof from two of the six writers of Scary Movie), but something that is going to shock us. We should still think that she’s giving a great performance; however, I’d also love us to think, “THAT is the woman from American Beauty? Wow.”
Andrew: What would you say about Annette in The Grifters or perhaps Running with Scissors? Warren Beatty considers the latter hest best performance.
Marshall: I’m a bad fan … I haven’t seen her in either.
Andrew: How important you think casting is in film? Does the actor make the role or vice versa?
Marshall: I think casting is extremely important. They have to be capable of taking the character from the page and breathing life into those words. We’ve all seen many great characters ruined by bad actors (cough, Diego Luna in Milk), and we’ve seen many great actors ruined by bad characters. But the latter is the actor’s fault, not the casting director’s.
Andrew: Do you think there should be an Oscar category for casting directors?
Marshall: It would be sweet if the Oscars added an ensemble category and maybe gave the casting directors the Oscar for that. But there would be a massive outcry if the actors didn’t get them as well. I don’t know if simply being in a well-acted movie qualifies anyone in that movie to receive an Oscar.
Andrew: Gun to your head: you can only pick films from 1978 and earlier or 1979 onto now. Which would you pick? Why?
Marshall: I’d have to take the movies from the post-1979 world if only because I have the nostalgia factor of those that I saw in theaters. Although most of the movies I’ve seen have been from 1979 on, so being stuck with the 1978 and earlier wouldn’t be too bad because of all the new movies I could watch.
Andrew: You’re a seventeen year old student; how difficult is it keeping up the blog?
Marshall: It’s very tough, especially during the school year. I try to work on writing pieces whenever I have free time, but I have a lot of homework and activities that have to come first. I have started to learn the beauty of having a big archive of posts that I can just publish whenever I don’t have much time for the blog, and that has really helped relieve the pressure. But even with all the stress, I still wouldn’t give up blogging for some extra sleep.
Andrew: Do your schoolmates or family members read your blog?
Marshall: My dad is one of my four email subscribers, which is both good and bad; various other family members read as well. As for friends at school, there are some of them that read. I have a few die-hard readers, and then I’ll get the occasional Facebook message from someone who read a review or a post and had something to comment.
Andrew: Do you see films predominantly as art or entertainment?
Marshall: I’d say entertainment. At the very basic level, a good movie needs to engage us, either through pleasing our eyes or giving our brain something to chew on. “Entertainment” has come to be associated with mindless spectacle in the blockbuster era, but I definitely find myself entertained by movies that don’t fit that bill.
Andrew: Put together a film of your own – director, actors, writers (cinematographer, editor, set designer, costume designer, scorer) and a short plot if you wish.
Marshall: The Dark Knight Returns – the dream team from the last movie, Nolan, Pfister, Zimmer, etc. plus Bale, Caine, Freeman, and Oldman. New characters include Michael Emerson (Ben from Lost) as The Riddler, Philip Seymour Hoffman as The Penguin, and Marion Cotillard as Vicki Vale.
Andrew: I’ve noticed more than a few people going crazy for Marion Cotillard lately. What is it about her that makes you a fan?
Marshall: She’s stunningly beautiful AND she can act. Her performance in La Vie en Rose is easily one of the greatest of all-time, a hyperbole I have no reservations about using. Public Enemies and Nine would have been great mainstream breakout roles for her had either of those movies been any good, but it looks like Inception is finally going to do it for her.
What are your thoughts on Reitman, Cotillard, casting and movies?