The Directors - James Cameron
Michael Biehn Interview
This is a transcript from the The Directors - James Cameron Interview. Michael Biehn's interview is reproduced here without authorisation but there is no profit being made and no copyright infringement intended. This is purely for the interest and pleasure of fellow Michael Biehn fans who might stumble across this page.
Jim is a perfectionist.. there is no doubt about that... and he is very demanding. He's no more demanding on anybody else than he is on himself. And for me it was always... exciting to have somebody like demand more from me than less. Somebody who wanted the best from me... the most that I had to offer... pushed me and pushed me and pushed me until he got the best performance.. that he could. It's a great experience for me working with him no matter how demanding he is.
Ridley Scott's movie was hardly an action film and, although there are elements of suspense in Jim's movie I... I think he achieved what he wanted to achieve... you know... I think Aliens is a brilliant movie.
On The Abyss:
One time, like, we were down there and everybody was on different air... air supplies and we go over to this under... underwater filling station to fill up air... and everybody had different levels of air. You ran low you went and got some underwater and... we were down there.. and we all had safety divers... so on and so forth. They lost power at the plant. So it went black. Everything just went black and, I mean *black*, like--like this... so you couldn't see this in front of your face (waves hand a few inches from face). So, I panicked for about 30 seconds... 40 seconds.. and then I realised that I was wearing one of these flashlights that my character wears and uses under the water. So, I turned on the flashlight... got the flashlight turned on. People started swimming and coming over real quickly and we... Jim came over and Jim was very calm and described how we were gonna make our way out and kinda with signals and so on and so forth and... at the end of the day. Again, I put in a sixteen hour day... and I walked by the tank and in the tank they have big windows. Kinda like these so you could watch us filming... and as I walked by the tank after getting out of makeup... I was just exhausted and Jim was *still* in the water. He was probably in the water eighteen hours and he was hanging off the line decompressing 'cause he spent so much time in the water he had to come up very slowly... so... to save time or to make his time work better for him... he was down there and he was watching dailies on an underwater monitor... you know... and it's just the type of guy he is. He just... he just loves films and he just works and works and works and works and works. It's kind of a joy to see
Here you have a guy like Jim Cameron who is a brilliant writer as far as I'm concerned.. obviously one of the best writers out there who is open to ideas about his dialogue and I think it makes him a better director. Now, he'll let you know if you don't have a very good idea in no uncertain terms but he'll listen.