I was raised in a modest bungalow located within a large residential community on the outskirts of Blackburn. My mother worked as a teacher while my father was a draftsman at a television set manufacturing factory. My upbringing was entirely unremarkable.
Blackburn’s Unit Four cinema was a scruffy place. In my teens, I went to its fortnightly foreign-language film screenings religiously. I was always desperate to escape, and tThese films briefly transported me all over the world.
While attending a swimming lesson in my childhood, my mother noticed me lying on the bottom of the pool. A teacher then rescued me from the water. I have no recollection of this event, but my mother became fixated on ensuring I never swam in deep waters again. As a result, I still do not find ocean swimming to be a calming experience.
My family often tells me that I have a bad habit of constantly pacing. I can often be found walking around the house, running my fingers through my hair, and having conversations with myself.
At the age of 17, I departed from school and embarked on my first international journey – I headed to the south of France to work picking grapes. On one evening, I attended a concert with a co-worker from Germany who owned a large motorcycle. On our way back, I suddenly realized that he was driving recklessly at a speed of 100mph. I held on tightly for safety and have not ridden a motorbike since that experience.
Reworded: Steve Coogan effortlessly excels at directing. I have collaborated with him extensively and he consistently delivers a blend of humor and intrigue. Simply filming him in action is enough; I thoroughly enjoyed our joint project, 24 Hour Party People.
I regretted my decision to study English at Oxford University. Despite my love for reading, I lacked the dedication needed for such a rigorous program. It wasn’t until I stumbled upon a film workshop in the city that I discovered my true passion.
I experience a specific form of vertigo. I am comfortable on airplanes or when someone else is in control. However, when I am in charge, even small ladders make me feel exposed.
Instead of creating a short film, I recommend making a longer one to aspiring filmmakers. Get out there and film something on your own. Focus on a single, substantial project rather than multiple 10-minute ones. The best way to improve is through practice.
In general, I tend to avoid taking risks. This is likely due to my mother being very protective of me during my childhood. I also displayed this same cautious behavior with my own children while they were playing. The tendency to be careful has been ingrained in me and it’s not something I can easily change at this point.
It is important to take advantage of any opportunity to eat, as you never know when the next meal will be available in my line of work.
Some individuals claim I am prone to anger. I do tend to raise my voice frequently, but it is not due to frustration, rather a method of seeking attention.
Extremist ideologies drive individuals to extreme behavior, leading to increased polarization between opposing groups. My latest movie, Shoshana, delves into this phenomenon in Palestine during the era of British colonization, but it remains relevant in present times not just in the region, but globally as well. Over the last decade, these divisions have only grown deeper.
When I first began in the film industry, it was difficult to break into and it remains so to this day. It was a tightly controlled union environment at the time, where success relied heavily on connections. While having connections is still beneficial, the best approach now is to venture out and start filming on your own, or to gain experience by working for free. However, both options require significant financial resources.
I am not at all surprising as a man. My nature and characteristics are quite apparent and uncomplicated.
The Q&A session featuring Shoshana and Michael Winterbottom will be shown at the UK Jewish Film Festival 2023 in London theaters from November 9th to 19th. The festival will also be touring nationally from November 9th to 30th, and a variety of films will be available for online viewing from November 20th to 27th.