Steven Spielberg told a Berlin Film Festival press conference on Tuesday that he has yet to set his next movie in the wake of back-to-back productions West Side Story and The Fabelmans.
“I wish, I wish,” the director said when quizzed on what was coming up next.
“I was so involved with two films back-to-back… I never had a chance to think about what am I going to do when these two movies are over. And I sit here in front of all of you saying, ‘I don’t know what I’m going to do next. I have no idea.”
“It’s kind of a nice feeling. And it’s also a horrible feeling. It’s nice that I can actually have control of my life again and makes my own choices in my real life. But I need to work and I love to work and that’s the biggest question I’m going to have with the rest of the year trying to figure this out.”
The director is reported to have a number of passion projects on the back burner including a Frank Bullitt reboot and a George Gershwin biopic but did not mention them in the press conference.
With his producer’s hat on, Spielberg gave an update on the previously announced HBO limited series about the historical French figure of Napoleon Bonaparte based on a screenplay by Stanley Kubrick.
He said the project was in cooperation with Kubrick’s widow Christiane Kubrick and her producer brother Jan Harlan.
“We’re mounting a large production for HBO based on Stanley’s original script Napoleon, working on Napoleon as a seven-part limited series,” he said.
Spielberg has worked relentlessly over his 63-year building up 59 director credits and more than 180 producer credits to his name.
The director is on a flying visit to the Berlin Film Festival to be feted with an Honorary Golden Bear for lifetime achievement on Tuesday evening.
The ceremony will be followed by a gala screening of his semi-autobiographical, coming-of-age drama The Fabelmans, about a movie-obsessed teenager who turns his camera on his dysfunctional family as he makes his first steps into filmmaking.
The festival has also been screening a selection of previous films including the 1972 first feature Duel, Jaws (1975), Raiders Of The Lost Ark (1981), E.T. (1982), Schindler’s List (1993), Munich (2005), Berlin-set Cold War thriller Bridge Of Spies, which he shot in the city’s Studio Babelsberg in 2014.
The director revealed that the award ceremony coincided with the sixth anniversary of his mother’s death, on whom Michelle Williams’ character is based in The Fabelmans, and a reflective period in his life.
“In a sense what a Lifetime Achievement Award does is it sets you back into the past, whether you want to go there or not. It makes you very reflective. To be honoured in Berlin, which is one of the most august festivals in history is a tremendous high point in my life.”
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