Every year or so, I try to do something; it keeps me refreshed as to what's going on in front of the lens, and I understand what the actor is going through.
Now more than ever we need to talk to each other, to listen to each other and understand how we see the world, and cinema is the best medium for doing this.
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.
If it's a modern-day story dealing with certain ethnic groups, I think I could open up certain scenes for improvisation, while staying within the structure of the script.
I think what happened there was just the budget would be too big to build these sets because nothing really exists here in New York of that period; you have to build it all.
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 love the look of planes and the idea of how a plane flies. The more I learn about it the better I feel; while I still may not like it, I have a sense of what is really happening.
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.
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 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.