July 20th, 2010
05:55 PM ET
It’s likely that a few people have wondered in what direction M. Night Shyamalan’s career is headed, but one journalist in Mexico, at a press conference for “The Last Airbender,” actually asked the director himself.
“You had a very strong start to your career with the ‘Sixth Sense,’"the reporter started. “However, the audience has lost faith in your work….’Airbender’ feels like you want to capture audiences again by becoming more commercial, am I right?”
We’ll assume from Shyamalan’s response – which began with, “If I thought like you, I’d kill myself.... Your impression of my career isn’t my impression of my career, it’s something you read on Google” – the answer to that question is a “no.”
“Right after ‘Sixth Sense'...I made ‘Unbreakable,’ which for me is a better movie. And the favorite movie I’ve ever made was ‘The Village,’" Shyamalan said.
The writer/director isn’t the only fan of “Village”; in France, he said, the 2004 film is still favored. “In Spain ‘Lady in the Water’ is huge. In Japan, it’s a different movie," he added. “It’s a tricky thing to think about how perceive your work. It’s a fascinating thing that you would even characterize my whole career the way you just did, dismissively like that. I’m not even sure how to respond.”
At the end of the day, the director said, “I literally turn down more money in my life to do things because I just don’t believe in it – I never take money for anything I don’t believe in… Ultimately, its only time that will take that cynicism in your point of view and eradicate it. So I’ll try to make movies as long as they let me make movies.”
“Twilight’s” Jackson Rathbone, who was seated next to Shyamalan at the conference, tried to soothe any wounds that may have been inflicted.
“My sister and I actually have fights over what’s the favorite movie," Rathbone said. "My favorite movie is ‘The Village,' and my sister’s favorite movie is 'Lady in the Water.' If a director can inspire animosity between siblings on which film they love more, that’s speaking in itself."
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