“We have to change the negative things into positive. In today’s Japanese film industry, we always say we don’t have enough budget, that people don’t go to see the films. But we can think of it in a positive way, meaning that if audiences don’t go to the cinema we can make any movie we want. After all, no matter what kind of movie you make it’s never a hit, so we can make a really bold, daring movie. There are many talented actors and crew, but many Japanese movies aren’t interesting. Many films are made with the image of what a Japanese film should be like. Some films venture outside those expectations a little bit, but I feel we should break them.”
The above quote is from Takashi Miike. I know it because writer Warren Ellis shared it a few years back. I love it. Ellis used it in reference to Jack Kirby’s comic adaptation of 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY for Marvel Comics. It was an apt reference there and I think it works for plenty of other creators who have transcended their circumstances to create work above and beyond what’s expected of them, their place in the pop culture hierarchy or their genre.