Monte Hellman was born in New York, and after brief careers as a theatre director and portrait photographer, began directing films in the 1960s. His first films were with the famous Roger Corman stable, for whom he made two westerns with Jack Nicholson, THE SHOOTING and RIDE IN THE WHIRLWIND. His most famous film, TWO-LANE BLACKTOP, stars pop singers James Taylor and Dennis Wilson. It will be re-issued in a new DVD 2-disk set from Criterion in December.
He most recently made a short fiction film, STANLEY’S GIRLFRIEND, about a young Stanley Kubrick’s first days in Hollywood, which was shown at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival. It will be released later this year as part of a horror anthology called TRAPPED ASHES. He’s now preparing three new films.
He also teaches film directing at California Institute of the Arts.
Where have you heard about Scripteast?
I first heard about Scripteast at this year’s Karlovy Vary Film Festival.
What made you interested in this program?
I thought the program sounded challenging, both to the participants and leaders. Also, my great grandparents came from Poland, and I’ve never had a chance to visit.
What do you expect from this year edition of scripteast?
I have no expectations regarding this year’s edition of the programm, only hopes for the ability to meet the challenges
Do you have previous experience as tutor and advisor at similar workshops?
I was an advisor for three years at the Sundance Institute director’s workshop, and I currently teach directing at California Institute of the Arts.
What is your personal defintion of a good scrtipt and what – the most- makes it succesful?
A good script is hopefully something new, something personal, something that moves me as I read it. Above all, it must command my attention. If I’m bored, or if it becomes a chore to read, then pity the poor audience if it ever becomes a movie.