'Spectre's' Sam Mendes Offers 10 Tips to Young Directors

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Sam Mendes

"Get in touch with your inner 12-year-old," Mendes said as his first point. "He or she was an interesting kid."

Sam Mendes has some advice for young filmmakers.

The Spectre director, who was honored Friday night at BAFTA Los Angeles' Britannia Awards with the organization's John Schlesinger Award for Excellence in Directing, took his time on stage to offer up 10 helpful tips for up-and-coming directors who are looking to take on an action franchise.

Mendes, who took over the Bond franchise in 2012 with Skyfall more than a decade after he won an Oscar for American Beauty, has learned a thing or two on his latest pair of big-budget thrillers. Spectre, likely the last of the franchise to star Daniel Craig as James Bond, hits theaters Nov. 6.

Ahead of his film's debut, Mendes offered the following advice to new directors:

1. "Get in touch with your inner 12-year-old. He or she was an interesting kid."

2. "You can only ever point the camera at one thing at a time."

3. "You are playing roulette with someone else’s money. If you are going to bet it all on black, you need to be able to explain why."

4. "Making an action sequence is only interesting when you’re in the cutting room. Up until then, it is literally the most tedious thing you will ever do."

5. "On the day, be prepared — but also be prepared to make shit up."

6. "When you’re choosing for collaborators, do not listen to the people who tell you, “Yes, but I’ve never done a big movie.” If they are any good, they will learn — just like I did."

7. "You need to learn to tune out the white noise. You can not please everyone."

8. "Tarantino, Spielberg, Nolan, Scorsese, Greengrass, J.J. and Paul Thomas Anderson all still shoot on film. There is a reason."

9. "You’re trying to surf the big wave, so be prepared to be wiped out — but when you catch it, it feels like nothing else."

10. "When you get excited, don’t be afraid to leap out of your chair and sing the Bond theme."

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