Topic: Black Dahlia : Brian DePalma Interview
Master storyteller Brian De Palma, known for such classic crime dramas as "The Untouchables,â€ "Scarface,â€ and "Carlitoâ€™s Way,â€ and his thrillers "Carrie,â€ "Dressed to Kill,â€ and "Blow Out,â€ is famous for exploring themes of suspense, obsession, and gender identity. To this day, his "Carrieâ€ remains one of the most brilliant adaptations of a Stephen King novel. The Italian-American director has also showcased his diverse filmmaking talents in other genres ranging from blockbuster action ("Mission: Impossibleâ€ ) to war drama ("Casualties of Warâ€ ), science fiction ("Mission to Marsâ€ ), and comedy ("Wise Guysâ€ ).
While known for a signature, deft style â€“ one of recurring Hitchcockian themes, doppelgangers, femmes fatales, explosions of operatic violence, and sweeping and stalking cameras â€“ the director is the first to laughingly admit that he doesnâ€™t consciously ask, "How can I make this more Brian De Palma?â€ when he starts a picture. "Thatâ€™s an unconscious thing. I donâ€™t know why youâ€™re attracted to certain material,â€ he notes. Thereâ€™s just something that hooks you in and intrigues you.â€
De Palmaâ€™s unique vision, talent for writing, his sense of construction, his framing and rhythm are worthy of the best Hollywood directors. He is often cited as a leading member of the New Hollywood generation of film directors who either emerged from film school or are overtly cine-literate. His contemporaries include Paul Schrader, Martin Scorsese, John Milius, George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola, and Steven Spielberg.
In his latest project, De Palma directs an unforgettable adaptation of novelist James Ellroyâ€™s classic "The Black Dahlia,â€ the ultimate tale of obsession. The twists and turns of the intricate plot and numerous subplots reveal multilayered themes of unrestrained passions, mirror images, vivid violence and ruinous obsessions â€“ dark motifs and feverish throughlines of psychosexual obsession that director De Palma shares in common with Ellroy.
De Palma, who is an avid fan of crime fiction, recently sat down with Movies Online to discuss what it was like to helm "The Black Dahliaâ€ and the challenges he faced making the noir thriller.
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