Categories: Art+Culture

Top 5: Director Gus Van Sant

photo by Joni Kabana


Gus Van Sant’s film career started with a bad night, or Mala Noche, a film that he largely funded and won the LA Film Critics award for Best Independent Film in 1989. From there, Van Sant went on to break the Hollywood mold by engaging upcoming actors Matt Dillon and River Phoenix in the edgy films Drugstore Cowboy and My Own Private Idaho. Even after the box office successes, Van Sant was still on the fringe of the industry.

A Portlander who had studied at the Rhode Island School of Design, Van Sant soon signed on with big productions such as To Die For with Nicole Kidman and Good Will Hunting, starring Ben Afleck and Matt Damon. This connection with Damon led to Damon asking Van Sant to direct his new project, Promised Land, in theaters now. We were fortunate to get a moment with Van Sant to ask the all encompassing question for this Top 5—Why do you make films?

Gus Van Sant’s Top 5 Reasons for Making Films

1 – Challenge

It was so hard to do at first that it presented a challenge for me.

2 – Alluring Puzzle

It’s also the challenge extended beyond the craft of making films to the ability to rally enough help from people to put together a film, which is a big puzzle and another kind of challenge. Putting together that puzzle is absolutely absorbing, and seemingly insurmountable and, therefore, alluring.

3 – Presentation

Making films can bring you into worlds that you are interested in. So as you are studying a subject, you are also preparing a presentation that is about that subject, which will hopefully be amazing.

4 – Multiple Disciplines

Working with all the different artistic disciplines— sound, photography, light, story, acting— which I’d also consider, together, insurmountable, one never feels like they have truly mastered these.

5 – Communication

Communication with people, which was perhaps the original reason to get involved with cinema, can be sometimes important and sometimes just a bunch of fun.

Share
Published by
admin

Recent Posts

A mother-daughter duo writes a YA novel set on the Oregon Coast

interview by Sheila Miller Kim Cooper Findling and her daughter, 14-year-old Libby Findling, seem to have pulled off a near-impossible…

3 weeks ago

An architect and interior designer fashion a modern Tetherow home befitting the high desert

written by Melissa Dalton In this house, the formality of a traditional enclosed entryway is a thing of the past.…

1 month ago

Summit Arts Center’s creativity stems from a desire to preserve history in Government Camp

written by Catie Joyce-Bulay photography by Daniel Stark Most people head to Mount Hood for the epic skiing and hiking,…

1 month ago

A solar apiary combines solar power and pollination

written by James Sinks Honeybees dance and dip among the lightly shaded wildflowers in this patch of Rogue Valley farmland,…

1 month ago

New Oregon Shakespeare Festival Artistic Director Nataki Garrett seeks to broaden marketing and season

What I'm Workin On interview by Sheila G. Miller The Oregon Shakespeare Festival announced earlier this year that its new…

1 month ago

My Workspace — Blue Mountain Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center

Rehabilitating wildlife is a way of life for this former vet tech written by Catie Joyce-Bulay photography by Joni Kabana…

1 month ago