When playwright Martin McDonagh wanted to expand his work from stage to screen, he tested the waters by making a short film. That 2004 effort, the absurdly dark “Six Shooter,” paved the way for his career behind the camera — and won McDonagh his first Oscar. McDonagh would reteam with “Six Shooter” star Brendan Gleeson for “In Bruges” as well as for this year’s “The Banshees of Inisherin.” In McDonagh’s latest film, Colin Farrell plays a dairy farmer who has a falling out with his best friend, Colm (Gleeson), on a small island off the coast of Ireland. It’s an Oscars frontrunner — proof of just how a career can bloom out of the right short film.

Which is a model that Taylor Swift, who announced last week that she’s directing her first feature film for Searchlight Pictures, may hope to emulate. She’s already achieved too many career milestones to count, but her direction of “All Too Well: The Short Film,” a 15-minute movie that’s been viewed more than 80 million times on YouTube, represents a step in a new direction for the Grammy-winning artist who has dominated pop culture since the late 2000s. The film follows the story of one of her most beloved songs, the most-discussed track from 2021’s re-recorded album “Red (Taylor’s Version).” Fans who’d already loved “All Too Well,” devoured the saga of a 21-year-old woman (Sadie Sink) and her heartbreak over a relationship with an older man (Dylan O’Brien), and parsed all of Swift’s sorrowful and carefully chosen details.

Watch the full interview here as part of Variety’s Directors on Directors series, presented by MGM Studios and United Artists Releasing.