Woody Allen on What His New Movie’s Title Says About Its Quality


Last month, Woody Allen explained in an interview how to tell whether one of his movies is good or bad simply from its title: "If I look at the film and it's no good, I don't like to give it an aggressive title, I give it ... the kind of title that is low-key and promises nothing, so people are less disappointed by it". Shortly after, he announced that his next film would be called You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger. We ran into him last night at the Martin Scorsese–hosted screening of The Red Shoes at the DGA Theater, and asked him what Stranger's name portended. "Well, that was a very aggressive title, so you can hope that it's a good movie," he told us. "If I didn't think it was a good film, I would give it a quiet one-word title to deflect attention from it — so now you know the secret."

We also asked which of Stranger's actors — Antonio Banderas, Josh Brolin, Anthony Hopkins, or Naomi Watts — would play the film's "Woody Allen role." And there's bad news for anyone who wanted to see Banderas play a bespectacled hypochondriac: "There's no Woody character, I never think of that. That's all in the minds of people who have nothing better to think about," Woody told us. "I make films where I just think about the story. If there's a part that I would play, I would grab it immediately because I am the least expensive and the nicest person to work with. So I never let anybody play me."

Earlier: Woody Allen Explains How to Tell Which of His Movies Are Bad