hunger Watch: 12 Years a Slave Director Steve McQueen Explains Why He Never Wants to Make His Films Friendly

Director Steve McQueen is basking in the glory of his Independent Spirit Awards sweep and Oscars win for 12 Years a Slave. While we wait to hear where the filmmaker will be leading us next, take a look at this video essay featuring McQueen discussing the power of cinema.

For the British filmmaker, movies have to be about “an urgency, a necessity.” The Turner Prize-winning artist has always been drawn to an unconventional cinematic aesthetic. In the clip, he discusses being influenced by 1990’s queer cinema and compares its place in the canon to 1960’s French New Wave — not experimental for the sake of it, but to capture a moment, a voice.

McQueen admits he’s never been interested in making “friendly” films (and anyone who has seen frequently harrowing Hunger or Shame can attest to that), preferring to reveal truths and capture a sense of humanity. For more inspiring McQueen-isms, spend five minutes with the director, below.

 [Spotted via Filmmaker IQ]

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