Though he has made only five films in two decades—Strictly Ballroom, William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet, and the Oscar-nominated films Moulin Rouge!, Australia, and The Great Gatsby—Australian writer-director Baz Luhrmann (b. 1962) is an internationally known brand name. His name has even entered the English language as a verb, as in "to Baz things up," meaning "to decorate them with an exuberant flourish."
Released last month, Baz Luhrmann: Interviews collects twenty interviews that range from 1992 to 2013—the whole of Luhrmann’s feature directing career. Taken together, these conversations provide a chronological overview of his career and analytical insight into his work.
In this collection of interviews edited by Tom Ryan, Luhrmann discusses his methods and his motives, explaining what’s been important to him and his collaborators from the start and how he’s been able to maintain an independence from the studios that have backed his work. He also speaks about his other artistic endeavors, including productions of La Bohème and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and his and collaborative partner Catherine Martin, who has received two Academy Awards for her work with Luhrmann.
Most recently, Chanel brought on director Baz Luhrmann to create a short film celebrating their iconic fragrance Chanel No. 5. The result was a three-and-a-half-minute piece starring Gisele Bundchen titled “The One That I Want.” This is actually Luhrmann’s second film/advertisement for Chanel. His first was made in November 2004 and starred Nicole Kidman.
Watch the short film below and read a Vanity Fair interview with Luhrmann here.