M Night Shyamalan names the director who has influenced him the most

“I just followed his lead” , Shyamalan says of his favourite director

Elizabeth Aubrey
Thursday 22 July 2021 13:27 BST
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M Night Shyamalan has revealed which director has influenced him the most.

Shyamalan was speaking to Variety ahead of the release of his latest film, Old, which arrives in cinemas on Friday (23 July).

Shyamalan said that director Spike Lee has been the biggest influence on his career to date.

“It was definitely Spike Lee and he knows this,” Shyamalan told the publication. “The reason that I’m a filmmaker was [thorough him] leading the way. He didn’t look like anybody in Hollywood, he did it in a different way, he didn’t ask for permission”.

“I just followed his lead essentially...he’s super meaningful to me. I know if I didn’t [watch] She’s Gotta Have It, I’d be a doctor now,” Shyamalan laughed.

Old, an adaptation of the graphic novel Sandcastle by Pierre Oscar Levy and Frederik Peeters, follows a family on a tropical holiday who discover that a secluded beach they’re residing at is causing them to age at a rapid pace.

The film stars Gael García Bernal (Mozart in the Jungle), Vicky Krieps (The Last Vermeer) and Rufus Sewell (The Man in the High Castle).

Earlier this year, Shyamalan told Entertainment Weekly that the film’s source material came to his via a gift from his children.

“It’s based on this graphic novel that I was given from my daughters,” he said. “I read it, and the premise was so powerful…I thought it was very frightening and emotional, and the ideas just started coming, and I tracked down the owner, and the person that wrote it.

Spike Lee
Spike Lee (David Fisher/Shutterstock)

“It was just a beautiful thing, and kind of touching, that it came from my daughters, this story about getting older very, very quick.”

Old opens in cinemas on 23 July 2021.

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