William Friedkin

While we’ve wrapped up the 2016 Cannes Film Festival with our favorite films and more, cinema’s finest yearly event also honors the legendary filmmakers that help shape the medium. The man of honor at this year’s festival was William Friedkin, who created one of the scariest films of all-time (The Exorcist), did the impossible by proving a remake can work (Sorcerer), put one of the greatest car chases on film (The French Connection), and much more. While at the festival he gave an 80-minute masterclass which touched on virtually all aspects of his career.

“I decided to become a filmmaker at the age of 21, after seeing Citizen Kane,” he says. “I didn’t go to film school. My school was the Nouvelle Vague and Alfred Hitchcock.” He opens about his the first thing he looks for in an actor, only doing one take most of the time, working alongside Harold Pinter, the music of The Exorcist, the formation of The French Connection, and more. Check out the full video below, moderated by critic Michel Ciment, and for more, see his recent talk with Marc Maron here.

See our complete Cannes coverage below.

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