John Waters was recently in Seattle but is back again for a command performance. If you saw him in December don’t worry, this is a completely different show. Don’t miss it! He took some time out from working on his new book to speak with Equality365 about life, political figures and the Valentine’s Day show at The Neptune Theatre in Seattle. There are a few tickets left! Click here to get tickets and info. Don’t miss “A Date With John Waters”.
How do you stay creative?
I guess I stay creative because I am interested in human behavior. There is a never ending supply of material there. My newspapers are soap operas to me. I hate to say it but even when something terrible happens, it is material. You have to be really careful when you use something terrible but it is important. Everything is available to comedy. If you just take things out of context and twist them, there is so much you can get away with on a regular basis. I am sure some people will argue with me but I think I am politically correct. Nowadays life is just made up of random trigger warnings. My entire life is a trigger warning. I want people to give me trigger warnings when they talk about things like how good the new Pope is, or when they talk about how much they loved some new romantic comedy. I need trigger warnings too. It goes both ways (laughter).
I think trigger warning sounds like a double entendre. It sounds like you are about to be shot.
I think it sounds like a porn movie.
What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened while making one of your movies?
I probably wouldn’t tell you. I am not a masochist (laughter). The most embarrassing thing that happened to me while making a movie is if they didn’t make any money. Then I had to listen to the producer. Bad reviews never embarrass me. I basically built a career on bad reviews. Embarrassed means that something came out about you that you didn’t want to come out or be known. I am not embarrassed easily because I don’t really hide much. I can see all my movies, see the mistakes in them, and everything I learned while making them. I put this line in Cecil B. Demented’s mouth, “Technique is nothing more than failed style.”
Which political candidate would you most like to meet and interview?
Recently, someone asked if I could have sex with one of the candidates which would I pick. I could never say the truth. Don’t take this out of context because I am friends with Governor O’Malley but everyone would pick him. I mean the pickings are very slim sexually. It doesn’t matter if you are straight or gay. None of them are too hot in my opinion. I guess my answer would be Hillary just to be ironic. I don’t secretly have fantasies about her but think about the other choices. Now, what was your question again (laughter)? I have no desire to meet any of them really. I would really like to meet Obama. I think he has done a great job.
You are often mistaken for Steve Buscemi. Who else do people confuse you with?
Well, sometimes I am mistaken for Steve quite a lot. It has been a while now though. I think that has moved on. Recently, a lady on an airplane kept staring at me. I just sat there and thought about what she is going to say. Then, she asked me if I was a magician. That was my favorite thing. Now, I want to start wearing top hats and white gloves on airplanes.
Who would you like to portray you if they were going to make a biographical movie about your life?
I would definitely want Matthew Gray Gubler as the young me. We are in “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip” together. Alvin actually talks about “Pink Flamingos” which is really staggering if you think about it. Steve Buscemi would have to play the older me. He would be very good. Oh, and I would need an unknown lesbian (laughter). When I go to college campuses they always have those John Waters look-alike contest and some lesbian usually wins. They look great.
Do you see anyone taking up the reigns of your work?
I think a lot of people try really hard to not be like me. I think that the next John Waters would be someone who is not really trying to be at all. They would be totally new and creating a completely new genre. They would even startle me. I think Harmony Korine is doing a great job. A friend told me that his movie, “Spring Breakers” is the most irresponsible movie ever made and I just had to say “it isn’t that good!” (laugher)
If you could invite any famous or historical figure to dinner; who would it be?
I think it would have to be Mary Magdalene and maybe Jean Genet. They would be comparing notes on what the after-life is like and how they learned how to be bad in hell.
Could you tell us about the show you are bringing to Seattle?
Well, it is on Valentine’s Day so I hope I can be your Prince Charmless. People get vulnerable on Valentine’s Day. There is so much pressure to be in love. When I was younger and wanted to give a Valentine to someone I loved, I would go to the butcher and buy a chicken heart and wrap it up. I always loved that present. I think that is really romantic. If you have a girlfriend or boyfriend that would come see my show then that is the gift I recommend. I don’t think you should kill the animal. It should already be dead and eaten by someone else. I don’t want anything to go to waste.
There are a few tickets left! Click here to get tickets and info.
About “A Date With John Waters” from STG Presents:
Celebrate Valentine’s Day with John Waters. “Life is nothing if you’re not obsessed,” says Waters. Bring the partner you are obsessed with to the Neptune for a one of a kind V day experience.
He is famed the world over for his trash epics including “Pink Flamingos”, “Female Trouble” and “Hairspray”. “This Filthy World” is Waters’ rapid-fire one-man spoken word vaudevillean act that celebrates the film career and joyously appalling taste of the man William Burroughs once called “The Pope of Trash”. The show focuses on Waters early negative artistic influences, his fascination with true crime, exploitation films, fashion lunacy, the extremes of the art world, Catholicism, sexual deviancy and a love of reading.
Waters has written and directed sixteen movies including Pink Flamingos, Polyester, Hairspray, Cry Baby, Serial Mom and A Dirty Shame. He is a photographer whose work has been shown in galleries all over the world and the author of seven books: Shock Value, Crackpot, Pink Flamingos and Other Trash, Hairspray, Female Trouble and Multiple Maniacs, and Art: A Sex Book (co-written with Bruce Hainley) and Role Models. Waters’ book, Carsick, which chronicles his hitchhiking adventure across the United States in May of 2012 was published in June, 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux and appeared on bestseller lists for the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Denver Post and The Boston Globe. Waters is a member of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and is on The Wexner Center International Arts Advisory Council. Additionally, he is a past member of the boards of The Andy Warhol Foundation and Printed Matter and was selected as a juror for the 2011 Venice Biennale. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Maryland Film Festival and has been a key participant in the Provincetown International Film Festival since it began in 1999, the same year Waters was honored as the first recipient of PIFF’s “Filmmaker on the Edge” award. In September, 2014, Film Society of Lincoln Center honored John Waters’ fifty years in filmmaking with a 10-day celebration entitled “Fifty Years of John Waters: How Much Can You Take?” featuring a complete retrospective of his film work.