Re: Peter Bogdanovich

Henry K Mattoon (
Tue, 31 Mar 1998 10:31:54 -0800 (PST)

I'll second (or third) that. I've heard him at AFI events and other
events/screenings as well. He's got a terrific sense of humor and an
incredible knowlege of film history _and_ the practicalities involved in
filmmaking. "The artistic vision" of filmmaking vs, as Oksana indicated, the
down-to-earth realities of interviewing a stubborn codger like John
"let's just get this thing made, art be damned" Ford. The Ford film [esp the
outtakes] & Bogdanovich's interviews, with Ford are priceless, at once
Ford toying with this young upstart interviewer & at the same time
really giving some insight to his "intuitive" process of making films.

His other interviews with the Hollywood auteur pantheon (Hawks, Welles,
etc) are great as well, full of insight & show PB's interest in (a) film
art, (b) getting the film in the can, and (c) "hey, maybe I can make
films myself too." In fact, many of his interviewees were notoriously
interview-shy, and gave formulaic interviews to others, but often
really opened up to PB. Many of his interviews, actually, published in
books or in ESQUIRE or other mags, stand as good examples of how to draw
out interview-shy subjects.

The Bogdanovich-Ford interviews include such exchanges greats as
(recalling from memory here):

PB: "Why didn't the Indians just shoot the horses?"
JF: "Well, we wouldn't have a movie, then, would we?"

PB: ...any number of questions.....
JF: "Yup."


THE SEARCHERS (I think, but applies to pretty much any of Ford's films):
PB: "I loved the backlit scenes. Such incredible use of light and shadow."
JF: "Yeah, well, it was the end of the day and I just wanted to get the
shot in the can."

As a reviewer, interviewer, journalist, author, and filmmaker,
stretching back to the 1960's, not to mention his insider/outsider
perspectives, I think he'd be great. Personally, I think he has just the
right "been-there, done-that" attitude about Hollywood to really hold an


Henry K. Mattoon
National Moving Image Database
The American Film Institute
Los Angeles, CA

On Tue, 31 Mar 1998, Gary Handman wrote:

> I've head Bogdanovich speak at AFI affairs--he's pretty great!
> Gary Handman
> Director
> Media Resources Center
> Moffitt Library
> UC Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
> 510-643-8566
> "You are looking into the mind of home video. It is innocent, it is aimless,
> it is determined, it is real" --Don DeLillo, Underworld
> On Tue, 31 Mar 1998 wrote:
> >
> > We're thinking of bringing Peter Bogdanovich here in connection with our
> > ongoing authors series. Have any of you videolibbers ever heard him speak
> > in person, and if so, will you share your reaction to his speaking
> > abilities (apparently he does Cary Grant impressions, too....)? Feel free
> > to respond off list, and thanks in advance!
> >
> > Rebecca Locke-Gagnon
> > Toledo-Lucas Co. Public Library
> > Toledo, OH
> >
> >