I was not a collective person or a bohemian; I was an elitist.

— Elia Kazan

The most cheerful Elia Kazan quotes that are easy to memorize and remember

The world was like a huge red carpet out ahead of me to be walked on.

And it stretched on and on, no end.

52

What's called a difficult decision is a difficult decision because either way you go there are penalties.

51

Take it from a director: if you get an actor that Sandy Meisner has trained, you've been blessed.

24

Look for the contradictions in every character, especially in your heroes and villains. No one should be what they first seem to be. Surprise the audience.

23

I knew the exuberance of playing before an admiring audience and hearing my secret voice.

21

Whatever hysteria exists is inflamed by mystery, suspicion and secrecy.

Hard and exact facts will cool it.

21

The essence of the stage is concentration and penetration. Of the screen action, movement, sweep.

16

The motion pictures I have made and the plays I have chosen to direct represent my convictions.

16

I used to spend most of my time straining to be a nice guy so people would like me.

15

I was an outsider... but I was also sympathetic with people that were struggling to get up, because I struggled to get up.

14

I gave my life to the Group Theatre, because in it I'm building something for myself. What I build, I am.

13

A film director has to get a shot, no matter what he does. We're desperate people.

13

About Elia Kazan

Quotes 92 sayings
Nationality American
Profession Director
Birthday October 16

I hate the Communists and have for many years and don't feel right about giving up my career to defend them. I will give up my film career if it is in the interests of defending something I believe in, but not this.

10

I truly believe that all power corrupts.

Such is probably the thinking behind every political film ever made in Hollywood.

9

I like directors who come on the set and create something that's a little dangerous, difficult or unusual.

8

Never underestimate the narcissism of a writer.

6

The only guy who was at all helpful as a producer was Sam Spiegel with On the Waterfront. He's one of the few who even knows what he's doing.

6

I said to Tennessee, this thing is becoming the Marlon Brando show.

6

The more ambivalent you are and the more uncertain you are, then you can get something that you cannot anticipate.

5

I may be getting old, but not foolish.

5

A good director's not sure when he gets on the set what he's going to do.

5

I would rather do what I did than crawl in front of a ritualistic Left and lie the way those other comrades did betray my own soul.

5

Every fighter has one fight that makes or breaks him.

5

Miller didn't write Death of a Salesman.

He released it. It was there inside him, waiting to be turned loose. That's the measure of its merit.

5

The writer, when he is also an artist, is someone who admits what others don't dare reveal.

5

It's difficult, if not impossible, to get away with anything false before the camera. That instrument penetrates the husk of the actor; it reveals what's truly happening - if anything, if nothing. A close-up demands absolute truth. It's a severe and awesome truth

5

I was the true future. I understood Communism better than they did.

4

For years after I resigned, I was still faithful to their way of thinking.

But not in the American Communists.

4

The physical life of the scene is determined by whether the set squeezes people together or whether the set has an escape place in it.

4

There was no doubt that there was a vast organization which was making fools of all the liberals in Hollywood and taking their money, that there was a police state among the Left element in Hollywood and Broadway.

4

I was both very successful and very left;

the living demonstration of how you could be on the left and still be in the gossip columns and be envied for the money you made.

4

The makers of entertainment must try, in our field, to be honest and grown-up.

4

I spoke without fear of contradiction. I simply did not suffer self-doubt.

4

I was the hero of the young insurgent working class art movement.

4

There is only one thing I respect in so-called Broadway actors.

.. and that is their competitive sense.

4

Hey, you must be doin' good, 'cause I never hear from you.

4

I was always a self-conscious person.

4

The belief that the good in American society will finally win out... I don't believe any more.

3

I think there should be collaboration, but under my thumb.

3

I was even superior to the Communists and when they didn't go along with me, I quit them.

1

Some directors, like Stevens [George Stevens], shoot full circle, 360 degrees, and that's what's right for them. I generally shoot at about a seven to one ratio. But part of that is because I've worked on every screenplay, so I'm further along in the visual concept.

1

TV has made us get down to the nub and new films will begin to live up to what the medium can be.

0

You can't just sit there and do the lines. You have to do something revealing or unusual.

0

The thing about Brando was that I'd make these directions, and he'd walk away.

He'd heard enough... to get the machine going.

0

People made suggestions, but, hell, I don't actually listen to anybody, I just go my own way.

0

To be a member of the Communist Party is to have a taste of the police state.

It is a diluted taste but is bitter and unforgettable.

0

I was very intense. I think it's a privilege to be an actor.

0

I didn't have that much confidence. Maybe it looks that way. I'm glad it does.

0

I left the theater; I literally left to begin a new life.

0
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