Filmmaker Woody Allen has made more than 40 films in the past five decades. His latest, Midnight in Paris, just received an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture. In 2009, Allen joined Fresh Air's Terry Gross for a wide-ranging conversation about many of his films.
Woody Allen may have played his share of mousy intellectuals in his films, but he says that growing up, he was always "picked first for the team." On the occasion of his 40th movie, Whatever Works, Allen joins Terry Gross to talk about his inspiration and life behind the lens.
This interview was first broadcast on June 15, 2009.
Academy Award-winning writer and director Woody Allen discusses his life and his films — and why audiences shouldn't confuse the two. His latest movie, Whatever Works, tells the story of a "genius" professor in New York who marries a much younger woman.
It wasn't until Kathryn Hahn was in her late 30s and 40s that she finally began landing the roles she craved, playing complex women in TV series like Transparent and Parks and Recreation, and movies like Bad Moms and Private Life. Hahn notes that most of these roles have been with female directors and producers.
When TV critic Emily Nussbaum was growing up in the '70s, she says television wasn't something to be analyzed, criticized and picked apart.
"Even people who loved to watch TV would put it down," she recalls. "It was considered, at best, a kind of delicious-but-bad-for-you treat, and, at worst, more like chain-smoking, like something you did by yourself that messed up your brain."
Actress Greta Gerwig has made a career starring in movies about quirky women. She played a driftless dancer in Frances Ha and a punk photographer in 20th Century Women. Now she's written and directed her first film, an exploration of mother-daughter relationships called Lady Bird.