Tuesday, March 15, 2011


In person, Richard Ayoade's the world's most softly-spoken man, analysing every word, considering every syllable, visibly agonising over being misconstrued and taken out of context. With his trademark afro and glasses, he looks (and sounds) like a hipper, more stylish version of Maurice Moss (IT Crowd). He discusses film like a full-blown cinema junkie. But it's awkward, uncomfortable. Usually, I get nervous before a big interview. Not this time. If anything, it's Ayoade that looks nervous. At one point he offers, "I’m not a natural interviewee. It’s not my strongest suit. I feel sorry for people having to interview me".

Besides IT Crowd, Garth Marenghi's Dark Place and The Mighty Boosh, Richard Ayoade's directed music videos for Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Super Furry Animals, Vampire Weekend, Kasabian and his friends Arctic Monkeys (and The Last Shadow Puppets). He also directed the comedy "rock opera" AD/BC, working with IT Crowd, Garth Marenghi and Mighty Boosh co-star Matt Berrry. Submarine, a coming of age story starring Craig Roberts as Oliver Tate, is his first full-length feature film. I spoke to Richard at the Soho Hotel (above).

What was it about Submarine that appealed to you as a filmmaker?

Initially, I just really liked the book. I liked Joe Dunthorne’s writing. I liked the character. It wasn’t something I thought was particularly filmy. The book’s very literary. All first person. It felt very hard to translate. But I liked the book so much I wanted to try.

So you weren’t actively looking for your first film at the time?

Not really. It wasn’t a conscious decision. I… Er… Yeah… I wanted to make a film, maybe. It was a matter of wait until something felt right. It wasn’t a thing of me reading through various books and going, “I’ve hit upon it”.

Click here for the full interview - Don't Panic Online...

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