To put into perspective just how swiftly John Krasinski has pivoted from guy in reaction shots to action hero to auteur, consider how much of a shock it would’ve been just a few years ago to hear that Paul Thomas Anderson had hosted a screening of a movie by the Office star. But Anderson did just that not long ago, and the story of the pair’s friendship is pretty charming. In a New York Times interview about A Quiet Place, Krasinski discusses how Anderson taught him not to diss other people’s movies, after Krasinski said he’d just seen “not a good movie.” Anderson apparently “sweetly” pulled Krasinski aside and said, “Don’t say that. Don’t say that it’s not a good movie. If it wasn’t for you, that’s fine, but in our business, we’ve all got to support each other.” The reasoning: the movie was “very artsy” and Anderson insisted that “you’ve got to support the big swing. If you put it out there that the movie’s not good, they won’t let us make more movies like that.” (Of course there is a separate question of whether there really are movies that are bad and how you should discuss them, but that’s not something we need to get into right now in this blog post.)
Krasinski has very eagerly taken all this advice to heart, and told the Times, “Dude, Paul Thomas Anderson is out there on the wall for us!” He added, “He’s so good that maybe you project onto him that he’s allowed to be snarky, but he’s the exact opposite: He wants to love everything because that’s why he got into moviemaking. And ever since then, I’ve never said that I hate a movie.” In other words, Paul Thomas Anderson is not nearly as much of a Reynolds Woodcock as you might assume.