×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

David Fincher: ‘Studios Treat Audiences Like Cattle In a Stockyard’

David Fincher remains unimpressed with how the major studios view their audiences.

“Studios treat audiences like lemmings, like cattle in a stockyard,” Fincher, who has directed titles such as Sony’s “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” and Fox’s “Gone Girl,” said in about-to-published Playboy interview for the October issue in response to a question about what he wants people to know about him.

“I don’t want to ask actors or anyone else on a movie to work so hard with me if the studios treat us as though we’re making Big Macs,” he said. “‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ is not a Big Mac.  ‘Gone Girl’ is not a Big Mac.”

Fincher has been promoting “Gone Girl,” starring Ben Affleck and based on Gillian Flynn’s bestseller. The murder mystery opens Oct. 3.

Fincher also touched on his interest in serial killers, having directed “Zodiac” and “Seven,” and said that he doesn’t like most comedies.

“I know that if a script has a serial killer—or any kind of killer—in it, I have to be sent it; I don’t have any choice,” he said with a laugh. “My responsibility to myself is always, ‘Am I going to be the commodity that people want me to be, or am I doing to do the sh*t that interests me?’  I have a lot of trouble with material. I don’t like most comedies because I don’t like characters who try to win me over. I don’t like being ingratiated. I don’t like obsequiousness.”

Popular on Variety

In response to a question about what frightens him, Fincher answered: “Complacency.  Also, I don’t like spiders, snakes, sharks, bears or anything that could make me part of the food chain.”

Fincher said he’d take another approach to Brad Pitt’s 1995 thriller “Seven” were he to direct it today.

“I would have a lot more fun,” he said. “It was only by the time I did ‘Zodiac’ or ‘Benjamin Button’ that I knew what I was doing.”

Still, he noted his appreciated for Pitt and Affleck.

“I offer everything to Brad, not because I’m pathetic but because he’s good for so many things,” he said. “Both Brad and Ben have a default ‘affable’ setting.  Neither wants you to be uncomfortable.”

Fincher also addressed his fearsome reputation: “I’m sure there are a lot of people who think I bite the heads off puppies,” he said. “There’s nothing I can do about that. The relationships that matter to me are always with people who wouldn’t have preconceived notions based on somebody’s work.  I gave up worrying about that years ago.”

More Film

  • My Zoe

    'My Zoe': Film Review

    There are two films in Julie Delpy’s ambitious, sharply-made but unbalanced “My Zoe.” There’s the scabrous relationship melodrama, about bitter exes sharing custody of a beloved child, which contains the story’s most potent emotions. And there’s the sci-fi-inflected ethical-dilemma grief movie, which houses its most provocative ideas. Both have much to recommend them, not least [...]

  • Richard Jewell

    The Big Lie of 'Richard Jewell' (Column)

    For a man who was so enraged at the administration of Barack Obama that he spent his 2012 Republican Convention speech lecturing an empty chair, Clint Eastwood has made a number of conventional, level-headed — one might even say liberal — political dramas. Films like “Invictus” and “J. Edgar” and “Midnight in the Garden of [...]

  • Oscar Isaac Star Wars The Rise

    Oscar Isaac Has Never Felt Like a 'Star Wars' Insider

    Unlike his “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” co-stars Daisy Ridley and John Boyega, Oscar Isaac had already established a long and acclaimed acting career before J.J. Abrams cast him as ace X-wing pilot Poe Dameron in 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” including standout roles in 2006’s “The Nativity Story” and 2011’s “Drive,” and [...]

  • Les Arcs to Showcase New Projects

    Les Arcs to Showcase New Projects by Jonas Alexander Arnby, Agnieszka Smoczyńska

    Denmark’s Jonas Alexander Arnby, France’s Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli, and Poland’s Agnieszka Smoczyńska are among up-and-coming directors from across Europe whose latest projects will be presented at the 11th Coproduction Village of Les Arcs Film Festival. This edition of Les Arcs Coproduction Village will showcase a total of 22 European projects spanning 19 countries. [...]

  • Chez Jolie Coiffure

    'Chez Jolie Coiffure': Film Review

    Shortly before the credits roll on “Chez Jolie Coiffure,” a customer in the eponymous hair salon asks her stylist, Sabine, if she has any plans to go home this year. Out of context, this sounds like the kind of standard, empty small talk one often makes while having one’s hair cut: what good movies you’ve [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content