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Director David Tausik on Tarkovsky
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November 9, 2002
Filmmaker David Tausik shares
with us the following interesting anecdote.
To : Nostalghia.com
From: David Tausik
Date: Wed, 30 Oct 2002 15:07:14 EST
While I was shooting a film in Moscow I heard a good anecdote about
Andrei Tarkovsky that also helps sum up how I feel about his work. I
was making a Roger Corman film called Haunted Symphony. It was set in
the 1870's, so there was a lot of fire in the film: candles, torches,
fireplaces, immolated peasants -- all set on an old tinderbox of a
soundstage at Mosfilm Studios. The studio manager, an old-timer
there, was apparently worried that I might be a madman intent on
burning down their complex, and my translator couldn't convince him
otherwise. I finally confronted him face to face, and he confessed
that they were nervous wrecks when it came to fire ever since 1971
when Tarkovsky had, without anyone's permission, launched a rocket
ship on the very same sound stage and nearly burnt the studio down.
I'm told that even after all the fire trucks left, Tarkovsky had
remained unapologetic. He felt it was an "artist's right."
That is the sort of man I fantasize about being but could never be:
unmindful of the studio, unconcerned about whether the public
understands my work, uncompromising in every way, shooting films for
20 months on end, long after the money has run out and the producer
has killed himself.
That's a real artist, and that's Tarkovsky. My hat's off to him.