I joined the Madras Christian College but dropped out after three months. Telugu music director Ramesh Naidu asked me to assist him, and I did so for over a year. I did think of rejoining college, but by then, I was discovering the musician in me. I worked with Illaya Raja and Raj Koti and soon shifted to commercials. This led to movie offers.
I have been connected with the Niels Bohr Institute since the completion of my university studies, first as a research fellow and, from 1956, as a professor of physics at the University of Copenhagen. After the death of my father in 1962, I followed him as director of the Institute until 1970.
There must be a story within him/her that wants to come out. That's the reason why 'Dil Chahta Hai,' 'Lagaan,' and 'Rang De Basanti' worked so well: Ashutosh, Farhan, and Rakesh had a story inside them. It's very important that the director should have the fire in the belly to tell the story.
Essentially, it is the director who is the creative head of a film. The final authority on all decisions lies with the director. That is how it should be. And then other team members can give their creative inputs.
Directors, producers can make you look good or make you look bad.
I would love to get great performances from actors as a director, because that's what I'm always looking for, a director that's going to help me go places I've never been before.
With the work that I do as a director, I've got dialogue, camera movement, and character blocking to help create a tone to the piece. In photography, those elements are somewhat void so that tone becomes a bit more subtle but still equally important.
I feel as if I've been fairly successful with maintaining a cohesive tone between the work I make as a photographer and as a director.
Being an actor really, really strengthens me as a director. There's just a certain type of understanding that comes from having been there and knowing how much is really being asked of actors that helps me.
When I write something, I want the best director to direct it. And that's not going to be me. So when David Fincher comes along and wants to direct 'The Social Network,' when Bennett Miller comes along and wants to direct 'Moneyball,' or when Danny Boyle wants to direct 'Jobs'? Hallelujah. I want them directing it.