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Abel Ferrara Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (1)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trade Mark (12)  | Trivia (9)  | Personal Quotes (34)

Overview (1)

Born in The Bronx, New York, USA

Mini Bio (1)

Born in the Bronx, Ferrara started making amateur films on Super 8 in his teens before making his debut with violent exploitation films such as 'Driller Killer' and 'Ms.45'. Good reviews for the latter helped create his cult reputation, leading to larger budgets, studio funding and 'name' actors (Christopher Walken, Harvey Keitel), but he still likes taking his camera out onto the meanest streets of New York, as the ultra-cheap, highly controversial 'Bad Lieutenant' demonstrates.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Spouse (1)

Pauline LaMonde (? - ?) ( divorced)

Trade Mark (12)

Often features characters caught in self-destructive patterns (King of New York, Bad Lieutenant)
Frequent use of religious imagery
His characters are often deeply flawed individuals trying to survive in a bleak world.
Frequently sets his films in New York City
Frequent references to philosophical and religious concepts
Uses very little, if any, music in his films
Often collaborates with screenwriter Nicholas St.John
Long running camera shots
Many of his protagonists are portrayed as inherently decent men who have been caught up in violence.
His films often end with the death of the main character.
Recurring theme of faith and redemption

Trivia (9)

Grew up in Peekskill, NY.
Has two adopted daughters.
Went to high school with Nicholas St. John, who has written many of his films.
Visited Sarajevo Film Festival (Bosnia, 8/2006)
Is a close friend of fellow director Michael Mann. Ferrara directed episodes for Mann's TV shows Miami Vice (1984) and Crime Story (1986). Ferrara also makes private screenings of his films to Mann who, in exchange, gives him tips and advices on editing.
Is of Irish and Italian descent.
In March 2006 he visited Argentina to promote his film "Mary" (2005) at the Mar del Plata International Film Festival.
Converted to Buddhism in 2007.
Moved to Rome, Italy, after the September 11 attacks and has lived there since.

Personal Quotes (34)

As barbaric as we are, it's a miracle we haven't blown ourselves off the face of the earth so far.
Life is what happens when you're doing other things, right?
I'm about my characters.
That's the thing about making a movie: You never finish editing. They just take it away from you.
A script is not a piece of literature, it's a process.
No one can stop me from talking about my movie.
I'm not a big fan of talking about dying. And then I make a movie where I kill everybody.
In the film business, it's basically honor among thieves.
My life is proof that I don't need you to do what I do. If there's no one to see it, I'll watch it.
My existence is about making movies, so I've just got to rock and roll with the punches. You want to make movies on telephones, I'm there.
I grew up in the '60s, which was a creative time, so it wasn't that big of a stretch to go from a baseball bat to a guitar to a film camera.
The last day of your life is still going to be a day.
It's funny, the hardest thing to do is to make something look like it's fast, loose and improvised, and get somebody to laugh.
Certain actors wanna get paid, they think working in a low-budget movie is being ripped off. But for others it's like, "Yes, let's do it".
I come from a world where you get the film done, that's a success.
Mulberry Street was the beating heart of the Italian-American experience, but you don't find those gangsters now. I live with a bunch of yuppies and models.
Making money is not gonna change anything about what I am, except I won't answer the door.
Most filmmaking is about shaking hands and just starting.
Listen, anybody who has a film festival has the right to show what they want.
I was born in the Bronx, and then my father moved us to the country at an early age.
I don't have a problem with Werner Herzog.
I don't know what DVD commentaries are about. I'd like to strangle the person who came up with that concept.
I don't care if I get $50 million to do a film.
I'm a lapsed Buddhist like I'm a lapsed Catholic. I take it to a point.
I was raised a Catholic and when you're raised a Catholic they don't teach you to think for yourself. You're taught not to think too deeply about things.
As an old-time New Yorker, it's not that I miss the '70s and '80s or whatever. I miss the fact that there was a certain kind of energy that exists when people can live for nothing.
It's only Western civilization that, God forbid, you talk about dying, when it's the only thing we know for certain, right? Everyone's going to die, so what's the big problem? "Oh, God. Don't talk about it. Don't think about it". I mean, I'm one of them.
The more you get into any religion, it becomes the same. It really becomes how you treat other people and how you get outside yourself. How you look to help other people, and how you get out of this "I, me, mine" type of thing.
But I'm never gonna get to a point in my life where what it costs to shoot a movie is going to determine what it is. The limits of my imagination is the only thing that's gonna stop me.
There's no such thing as a non-final cut director.
With "New Rose Hotel" I knew that I was getting paid a $100,000 fee to write, produce and direct, and that's all I was going to get.
The actors that I love to work with, they're hard on me. They're pushing me.
The secret is not to make a film that causes something like Virginia Tech to happen. The secret is to make a film that stops it happening.
Where I come from you're not raised to think on your own. It's not that you're pushed to read the Bible. The Bible is read to you.

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