In a discussion held at Rochester’s annual 360/365 Film Festival moderated by local film critic Jack Garner, director Julie Taymor spoke about her films and caeer.
Director Julie Taymor has never followed the rules. In a discussion held at Rochester’s annual 360/365 film festival moderated by local film critic Jack Garner, Taymor said she “always jumped off the cliff instead of just standing on the cliff.” Her latest film, William Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’, is a perfect example of this. Taymor casts Helen Mirren as ‘Prospera,’ a female rework of the original male character.
Her previous film, “Across The Universe,” was a musical with the songs of The Beatles, release in 2007. It’s visually stunning, psychedelic, and earned her an Oscar nomination. Taymor also directed the Broadway version of ‘Spiderman: Turn Off The Dark’ for a time and used not just her knowledge of swinging ropes with the help of audience member and famed choreographer Garth Fagan [who fyi, is dance professor emeritus from TFPN Chief Notetaker's alma matter SUNY Brockport]. She also used knowledge gleaned from research of 40 years of comic books.
Directing ‘The Lion King’ for Broadway gave her an opportunity to work with Garth Fagan. Taymor’s goal was to “reinterpret the [movie] in a fresh and personal way” for the theatre. According to Fagan, “working with Julie was the major privilege of my life. She is described as demanding, but she is demanding for excellence.” That demand for excellence earned her two Tony Awards.