Mark Ruffalo and Melanie Laurent have both directed movies. Did that make them easier to work with?
They take direction easy. And when they see me, they’re like, “Oh, I know what he’s feeling.” Like the first shot of the day when the sun is rising. Or “Oh, I still have sixteen shots in a day.” Morgan Freeman has directed a lot of movies, so he knows exactly. Great actors are so easy to direct. It’s like they’re big 747s that you just have to move left and right, and I don’t really need to direct. I need to put them in the right costume, with the right haircut, in the right location, and with the right actor to act with. My job is almost done at this point, because I’ve found the perfect — it’s like cooking, it’s like cuisine. You cannot make a great dish with bad ingredients. I have great ingredients, and I’m putting them together. That’s all I’m doing.

What's the tone of the movie. People were mentioning Sneakers, Ocean’s Eleven. What are you thinking for the tone of the film and did you ask the cast to maybe watch any films, or did you watch any films before starting?
Yeah, obviously I watched Sneakers, Ocean’s Eleven, Usual Suspects, and all these movies, these heist movies. But for me, the movies I was giving my actors were more like French movies, just for the filming stuff, French movies. There’s a movie actually Melanie is in, called The Beat My Heart Skipped, it’s an unbelievable movie. It’s a remake, actually, of an American movie, James Toback’s Fingers. But there’s a levity about the camerawork that is really inspiring. I was talking to actors, I was like, here is how my camera is going to interact with you. You will be free, and I will capture moments, but it’s not going to be about the camera.

Because I was afraid they’d be like, ugh, the guy from Clash of the Titans is trying to direct me to say these big lines, and it’s going to be terrible. But I was like, “No no no, I’ve done these big movies, but really what I’m trying to do with this one is really to put you in the right mind or space, and then capture these great moments. Put a great group together and capture these little moments. I’m not trying to impose my style on a new film, like it’s just my toy. I’m not interested in this.” So that’s what I show them. It didn’t really have anything to do with the movie or the tone. Yeah, this movie, the tone is funny. All these people, they’re fast. Everybody’s having a great time, off-camera but on-camera too. It’s really fun, fast. It feels stupid to say that, but it really is like a thrill ride. It’s really fun and fast. The movie starts first heist seven minutes into the movie, and then you go in and never stop.

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