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Brett Ratner

Brett Ratner

Birthday: 28 March 1969, Miami Beach, Florida, USA
Height: 173 cm

Brett Ratner is one of Hollywood's most successful filmmakers. His diverse films resonate with audiences worldwide and, as director, his films have grossed over $2 billion at the global box offic ...Show More

Brett Ratner
The guy who directed Saul fia (2015) is probably getting offered 20 movies right now, but he's choos Show more The guy who directed Saul fia (2015) is probably getting offered 20 movies right now, but he's choosing to go do a movie in his native Hungary. That's my advice to filmmakers: Have your next movie ready to go. Don't sit around. Go shoot. I only got to where I am because I'd shot millions of feet of film before I shot my first movie. Then I was ready to make them back to back. I wasn't sitting around reveling in the success of Rush Hour (1998). I shot like seven movies in seven years. Then I started taking my time to be more strategic about it. But don't be strategic about it - just go shoot a movie. At the end of the day, it's about a body of work. Nobody's judged by one film, right? You can't judge Coppola on The Godfather (1972). There's The Conversation (1974) and Apocalypse Now (1979) and The Outsiders (1983). That's what you have to look at. [2015] Hide
No matter how successful you are, you are not invincible. The studio is writing the checks. It's all Show more No matter how successful you are, you are not invincible. The studio is writing the checks. It's all about leverage and who has the power. The goal is to get the biggest deal you can, because you are going to have to give something back to the studios anyway. Hide
Why do I need final cut? Final cut is for artistes quote unquote -- directors whose movies don't mak Show more Why do I need final cut? Final cut is for artistes quote unquote -- directors whose movies don't make a lot of money. Maybe Scorsese should have final cut because a guy like Harvey Weinstein or a studio might change it to make it a little more accessible or a little more commercial and he has a vision of what he wants it to be. He wants it to be four hours long or whatever. Hide
[his advice for young filmmakers] You have to be in it for the right reasons - because you love stor Show more [his advice for young filmmakers] You have to be in it for the right reasons - because you love storytelling. That's the skill set of any filmmaker. They have to love that part of that. If you want to do it because you want to be famous, get laid, get rich, or whatever, it's not going to happen for you. Everyone from Spielberg to Mike Leigh had a strong desire to tell stories. [2015] Hide
If a short film on YouTube or whatever affects me that way, it comes to my attention and makes me in Show more If a short film on YouTube or whatever affects me that way, it comes to my attention and makes me interested in that filmmaker's ability to take me on a journey. Having a point of view is important. The problem is that a lot of filmmakers are trying to define their style. They want to be the next Spielberg or Scorsese. You don't have to do that with your first film. You just have to discover who you are and what your interests are. When I was in film school, they separate the wheat from the chaff was films that had a feature look. They had the quality of a feature film. But that's not as important anymore. It's just the story that's being told. That's why we accept a film shot on an iPhone 5, or something like The Blair Witch Project (1999). Once all these digital formats came out, companies like Panavision had to step up their game. Then came the RED camera. Technology was simplifying the whole medium. At NYU, to get recognized by Hollywood, you had to make a short film with a feature-length look to it - lit-well, in focus, beautiful photography. I financed and produced The Revenant (2015). It's breathtakingly beautiful, but I'd finance it even if it was shot with something else. That only enhances your experience of the movie. If you shot something on an iPhone, it's going to look grainy blown up on the big screen. So you have to use a different format for that. But there are different formats and media whereas before, you could only make a movie for the big screen. [2015] Hide
As a producer, I want to service the director and help him make the film he wants to make. That's th Show more As a producer, I want to service the director and help him make the film he wants to make. That's the great thing about RatPac - it's not just a financing company. There's a content creator - me, a filmmaker - behind it. I found that directors are embracing us as their partners. They're saying, "Hey, Brett, can you come in with this or that?" I understand their plight, you know? Harmony [director Harmony Korine] brought me his last script first. He wrote it in my house in Miami. People don't know this about me: I'm a cinephile and I love these filmmakers. I just produced a Martin Scorsese short film with Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro. I haven't necessarily made a movie like that myself, but I produce them. [2015] Hide
The worst thing that we have in today's movie culture is Rotten Tomatoes. I think it's the destructi Show more The worst thing that we have in today's movie culture is Rotten Tomatoes. I think it's the destruction of our business. I have such respect and admiration for film criticism. When I was growing up film criticism was a real art. And there was intellect that went into that. And you would read Pauline Kael's reviews, or some others, and that doesn't exist anymore. Now it's about a number. A compounded number of how many positives vs. negatives. Now it's about, 'What's your Rotten Tomatoes score?' And that's sad, because the Rotten Tomatoes score was so low on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) I think it put a cloud over a movie that was incredibly successful. People don't realize what goes into making a movie like that. It's mind-blowing. It's just insane, it's hurting the business, it's getting people to not see a movie. In Middle America it's, 'Oh, it's a low Rotten Tomatoes score so I'm not going to go see it because it must suck.' But that number is an aggregate and one that nobody can figure out exactly what it means, and it's not always correct. I've seen some great movies with really abysmal Rotten Tomatoes scores. What's sad is film criticism has disappeared. It's really sad. [2017] Hide
In an action movie, I don't want to move the camera too much, because the movement should be within Show more In an action movie, I don't want to move the camera too much, because the movement should be within the frame. The same goes for comedy. You don't want to push in for a joke; it's plenty in a medium shot. Watch my jokes, they're never in close-up. If the audience feels the camera, it's horrible. Hide
In Hollywood, you gotta keep the movement. You gotta have three or four projects and whichever one c Show more In Hollywood, you gotta keep the movement. You gotta have three or four projects and whichever one comes in first, or better, that's the one you're going to do. Hide
[on supporting young filmmakers] When I was a film student at NYU, there wasn't a platform like the Show more [on supporting young filmmakers] When I was a film student at NYU, there wasn't a platform like the internet for filmmakers. HBO was the only company that was buying short-form content, and it was only a little bit every month. But there were thousands of short films being made. Now, of course, with the globalization of film, there are so many more opportunities. The cool thing is that while you can make a film with your iPhone, it's still an expensive medium if you want quality - if you want a mix, if you want to do color correction. Even though there's software for editing, there's not really a post-production program for home use. That will happen eventually, but it still costs money to do something of quality. So there wasn't an outlet for that. Now, Steven Spielberg has someone every month prepare the best of YouTube. There's so much short-form content better than feature films out there. So there are huge opportunities now for young filmmakers out there to get something seen. As a young filmmaker, I could make something, but how would you get somebody to see it? (...) I got an agent out of the NYU film festival. Thank God that there was an agent there. She just happened to be there the night my short film was showing. Now, I think there are more opportunities. But the reach goes both ways. After I made my short film, I sent a letter to 40 of my favorite people in the business. I got 39 rejection letters. Katherine Kennedy was the one who gave me money. The interesting thing about that wasn't that it made me an overnight sensation. Yeah, maybe I got a little popular at NYU. But the truth is it gave me tremendous validation and confidence. That's what I hope this program I'm supporting at Key West can do. It should give tremendous validation to a young film student - the confidence to continue to pursue what they want to do. The hardest part for me was not quitting. There were talented people at NYU film school who are probably stock brokers or real estate agents now. The only reason I'm one of the most successful guys out of NYU is because I didn't quit. [2015] Hide
There are very few perfect films. I think Reservoir Dogs (1992) is close to being a perfect film. There are very few perfect films. I think Reservoir Dogs (1992) is close to being a perfect film.
[on recasting the role of Jack Crawford with Harvey Keitel in Red Dragon (2002)] When Jonathan Demme Show more [on recasting the role of Jack Crawford with Harvey Keitel in Red Dragon (2002)] When Jonathan Demme said make your own version, I couldn't see anyone but Anthony Hopkins and I couldn't see anyone but Anthony Heald as Dr. Chilton. I can't see another acting doing it. But what happened was I went down to the FBI, and discovered they're like tough New York Cops. They weren't like Scott Glenn. Hide
There's no difference between a tacky Jew from Miami and a rap star. They both want the Cadillac and Show more There's no difference between a tacky Jew from Miami and a rap star. They both want the Cadillac and the Rolex with the diamonds. Hide
Am I Orson Welles? Obviously not. But 50 years from now, who knows how, as a person, I'll have grown Show more Am I Orson Welles? Obviously not. But 50 years from now, who knows how, as a person, I'll have grown. I've already changed, from being a 26-year-old kid to a 38-year-old guy - I'm not a man yet, really. But as I get older, who knows how my experiences and my knowledge, this past 12 years making movies, how that's all going to affect the movies that I make? I know that the life I lived from 16 to 26 allowed me to make a movie like Rush Hour (1998), so now let's see... Hide
Brett Ratner's FILMOGRAPHY
All as Actor (5) as Director (10)
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