Cinema is a matter of what's in the frame and what's out.
And as I've gotten older, I've had more of a tendency to look for people who live by kindness, tolerance, compassion, a gentler way of looking at things.
I certainly wasn't able to get it when I was a kid growing up on the Lower East Side; it was very hard at that time for me to balance what I really believed was the right way to live with the violence I saw all around me - I saw too much of it among the people I knew.
There must be people who remember World War II and the Holocaust who can help us get out of this rut.
What the Dalai Lama had to resolve was whether to stay in Tibet or leave. He wanted to stay, but staying would have meant the total destruction of Tibet, because he would have died and that would have ripped the heart out of his people.
I don't agree with everything he did in his life, but we're dealing with this Howard Hughes, at this point. And also ultimately the flaw in Howard Hughes, the curse so to speak.
I think there's only one or two films where I've had all the financial support I needed. All the rest, I wish I'd had the money to shoot another ten days.
It seems to me that any sensible person must see that violence does not change the world and if it does, then only temporarily.
Movies touch our hearts, and awaken our vision, and change the way we see things. They take us to other places. They open doors and minds. Movies are the memories of our lifetime. We need to keep them alive.
I can't really envision a time when I'm not shooting something.
I grew up within Italian-American neighborhoods, everybody was coming into the house all the time, kids running around, that sort of stuff, so when I finally got into my own area, so to speak, to make films, I still carried on.
I also saw the Dalai Lama a few times.
I love studying Ancient History and seeing how empires rise and fall, sowing the seeds of their own destruction.
It did remind me of something out of Greek mythology - the richest king who gets everything he wants, but ultimately his family has a curse on it from the Gods.
I do know that some Buddhists are able to attain peace of mind.