I was just told that the director of a film I’ve recently seen and greatly admire currently lives in Rochester, New York. The second I heard this his stock immediately dropped. If you’re a serious director you can’t live in Rochester. I’ve been there and it’s absolute Nothingville — sprawling, architecturally bland if not ugly, economically depressed, living in the past (when Eastman Kodak was a booming company), overrun by corporate chain stores, schlubby fat people shuffling around, older cars everywhere, gun stores, yahoos with sideburns, etc.
The world is full of wonder and intrigue and immense beauty, and I can’t help but suspect that directors who seem to go out of their way to avoid this are, no offense, a little strange. Directors can live any damn place they choose — in the wilds of Montana, San Francisco, Austin, London, New York, Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, Vancouver, Croton-on-Hudson, New Mexico, western Massachucetts, southwestern Ireland, France, Brooklyn, northern Vermont, Italy, Sydney, Mendocino, New Orleans, Barbados, Chicago, Los Angeles and dozens of other cool places. But you can’t live in end-of-the-world Rochester without making people who’ve had a little education and experience go “what“?