He has been called the Master of Horror, but John Carpenter is truly a master of the art of cinema, an auteur of uncompromising vision and talent that is the lifeblood of each of his works. He is an artist that uses every corner of the cinematic canvas, from the soundtrack score usually composed by the director himself to those long widescreen shots that pull you into the world on screen. He has an unapologetic voice, cutting through the cluttered history of generic Hollywood blockbusters to find a much more substantial success and the eternal audience adoration reserved for only the classics.
With at least one notable exception, most of his movies did not break records at the box office, but they have since found a much larger, far more loyal audience, and they are easily watched more today than ever. He is a rebel who never played the Hollywood game to begin with, making his films his way, most often without studio support, doing more with a $300,000 budget in 1978 than most directors could pull off with ten times that amount, only to create new standards that have come to define each of the genres he has entered.
He is not only my favorite director of all time, but even more a personal hero that has defined more of my life than he will ever know, so when the opportunity to interview Carpenter arrived this past summer, I was just a little excited.