Every ethnic group has a mythology... Until 'Roots'... there was nothing in the popular culture to refute the paragraph in elementary school history class that said, 'Slaves picked the cotton, were happy and life wasn't so bad.'
Israel is too attached to America, too influenced by America. It should be connected to Europe. America is based on mythology - the free man, the individual, the open frontier. Europe is more conscious of history. Take Britain and Shakespeare. You shape your identity through history.
The Greeks first identified the Amazons ethnographically, as a nation of men and women distinguished by something outstanding in their gender relations. Later, any ambivalence or anxiety that knowledge of this alternative gender-neutral culture evoked among Greeks was played out in their mythic narratives about martial women.
The real Amazons were long believed to be purely imaginary. They were the mythical warrior women who were the archenemies of the ancient Greeks. Every Greek hero or champion, from Hercules to Theseus and Achilles, had to prove his mettle by fighting a powerful warrior queen.
I just had a hunch that there might be kernels of truth or reality - scientific or historical reality - in stories about nature that are perpetuated in oral myths. That's how I got interested in it.
We are used to thinking of Amazon myths in terms of violence against uppity women, but the ancient evidence also reveals a vision of gender equality.
The nomads' egalitarian lifestyle astonished the Greeks, who kept their own women indoors weaving and minding children. The exotic Scythian lifestyle fueled the Greek imagination and led to an outpouring of myths about fierce Amazons, 'the equals of men.'
I have discovered that if you take all the places of Greek myths, those specific locales turn out to be abundant fossil sites, but there is also a lot of natural knowledge embedded in those myths, showing that Greek perceptions about fossils were pretty amazing for prescientific people.
The biggest beauty myth is that everyone looks better without makeup. That's not true. Makeup is important.
With each film, I get more and more involved and it's more and more time-consuming. Also, I like to break myths and people's preconceived ideas. My characters have always stood for something, have always had an opinion, although they've never really rebelled.