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July 17, 2012

Stone @ SCA

Legendary Filmmaker Oliver Stone visits SCA

Oliver Stone needs no introduction at the School of Cinematic Arts. Few filmmakers have tackled controversial contemporary issues the way that world-renowned director, writer and producer Oliver Stone has done. With films like Platoon (1986)and Born on the Fourth of July (1989),  On July 13th, the visionary filmmaker came to the School of Cinematic Arts to speak to students about his new film Savages. He discussed the process of adapting a beloved novel.

Dr. Michael Renov, Vice Dean and Oliver Stone

“Don Winslow wrote a wonderful book,” said Stone. “We worked [on the script] over a period of time -off and on- in 2010, we made the movie in 2011. Of course, there were many hurdles and obstacles. [The story is] amplified in many ways.”

Stone’s visit was part of the School of Cinematic Arts’ Summer Program. The Q and A was moderated by Michael Renov. Stone gave words of encouragement to students in the audience who are facing discouragement getting their careers started.

“My career has been a long haul for me,” said Stone. “I’ve spent much time as a writer. It’s been many years. I know the frustration of writing and I know the beauty of it. Every movie, whether I’m credited on it or not, feeling that the key thing was structure. It’s an enormous amount of work. When I’m working on something, I immerse myself so entirely in the subject for such an amount of time that I become the subject. I had a Jim Morrison phase and I’ve had a Richard Nixon phase. The two things couldn’t be more different. I become the idea and my style comes from that. That’s why my films assume their own style.”

For more information, on SCA’s summer program, please visit: http://cinema.usc.edu/summer/index.cfm