In Their Words — Saturday, May 4, 2013

Martin Scorsese - Raging Bull

A friend of mine sent me that line [All this filming isn’t healthy] on a note when we were making Raging Bull! I think it was one of the cinematographers who’d just seen Peeping Tom. And there is no doubt that is aggressive and it could be something that is not very healthy. When you make a film… there are times in your life when you’re burning with a passion and it’s very, very strong. It’s almost like pathology of cinema where you want to possess the people on film. You want to live through them. You want to possess their spirits, their souls, in a way. And ultimately you can’t stop. It has to be done until you get to the bitter end. You’re exhausted. In some cases friends might have died, in some cases they don’t come back, in some cases they can’t make another picture. The only thing to do is try to make another picture. It’s got to be done again. Now, I don’t mean to sound dramatic, a lot of great films are made that way. And we might not only be talking about cinema here. We could be talking about other things, too. I would think that it might apply to other art forms. But I must say, that with that passion and that power, there is pathology in wanting to live vicariously through the people.

—Martin Scorsese