Two highlights of the new MTV interview with Frank “Shawshank Redemption” Darabont, who is directing Stephen King’s The Mist:
MTV: You obviously are a great lover of the horror genre. What do you think of films like “Hostel” and “Saw”?
Darabont: The torture-porn thing is pretty distasteful. I’m just not into it. Horror unfortunately tends to go in these cycles where it puts itself back in this ghetto. I just don’t find anything amusing about people getting tortured. I wish we weren’t making these movies. I think it degrades the culture. I think it diminishes the human spirit.
Darabont: Absolutely. I spent 20 years of my career primarily being a writer for hire. I had a few bad experiences to reinforce the decision that had been forming to get the hell out. I can’t be chained to my computer anymore, not for the paycheck.
MTV: Would you say one of those bad experiences is the time you spent writing the aborted “Indiana Jones 4” script?
Darabont: “Indy” is definitely in that category, topping the list. It showed me how badly things can go. I spent a year of very determined effort on something I was very excited about, working very closely with Steven Spielberg and coming up with a result that I and he felt was terrific. He wanted to direct it as his next movie, and then suddenly the whole thing goes down in flames because George Lucas doesn’t like the script ….
MTV: Did you ever speak to George Lucas directly?
Darabont: Yes! I told him he was crazy. I said, “You have a fantastic script. I think you’re insane, George.” You can say things like that to George, and he doesn’t even blink. He’s one of the most stubborn men I know.