Toronto 2012: Harvey Weinstein and Paul Thomas Anderson Respond to 'The Master' Venice Flap
TORONTO -- Harvey Weinstein and Paul Thomas Anderson on Saturday took the high road, rather than make Michael Mann and the Venice jury the villain for yanking the Golden Lion from The Master.
“I’m thrilled with whatever they want to hand over. I heard the scuttlebutt recently, but I’m thrilled with whatever we got,” Anderson told the media during a press conference at the Toronto International Film Festival on news The Master won directing and acting awards in Venice.
If Harvey Weinstein, who is releasing The Master in the U.S. on October 12, was bothered by his trophy haul in Venice not being even grander, he wasn’t showing it Saturday.
“No, no. It’s great. We think it’s better,” Weinstein said after South Korean director Kim Ki-duk's Pieta won the Golden Lion for best film in Venice.
The Hollywood Reporter earlier Saturday reported that new festival rules bar one film from snagging more than two major awards, which had the Venice jury reconsidering and giving the Golden Lion to Pieta.
“We think Michael Mann did a great job,” Weinstein added, referring to the American director and head of the Venice jury. In the end, The Master earned the Silver Lion for Anderson as best director, while the film’s stars, Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman, shared the best actor prize.
“It was amazing what happened in Venice… They gave it to both of the boys, which is amazing,” Anderson added.
The Master director, in no apparent mood for controversy, also refused to directly address whether his film was inspired by the life of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard.
"You did it, perfectly," Anderson told a journalist when asked whether Scientology was the “elephant with a lawyer” in the room that he wanted to discount and remove from the conversation around The Master.