Movie Audiences: Fincher Says Studios Treat Audiences like Cattle

“Studios treat audiences like lemmings, like cattle in a stockyard,” Fincher, who has directed titles such as Sony’s “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” and Fox’s “Gone Girl,” said in about-to-published Playboy interview for the October issue in response to a question about what he wants people to know about him.

“I don’t want to ask actors or anyone else on a movie to work so hard with me if the studios treat us as though we’re making Big Macs,” he said. “‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ is not a Big Mac.  ‘Gone Girl’ is not a Big Mac.”

Fincher has been promoting “Gone Girl,” starring Ben Affleck and based on Gillian Flynn’s bestseller. The murder mystery opens Oct. 3.

Fincher also touched on his interest in serial killers, having directed “Zodiac” and “Seven,” and said that he doesn’t like most comedies.

“I know that if a script has a serial killer—or any kind of killer—in it, I have to be sent it; I don’t have any choice,” he said with a laugh. “My responsibility to myself is always, ‘Am I going to be the commodity that people want me to be, or am I doing to do the sh*t that interests me?’  I have a lot of trouble with material. I don’t like most comedies because I don’t like characters who try to win me over. I don’t like being ingratiated. I don’t like obsequiousness.”

In response to a question about what frightens him, Fincher answered: “Complacency.  Also, I don’t like spiders, snakes, sharks, bears or anything that could make me part of the food chain.”

Fincher said he’d take another approach to Brad Pitt’s 1995 thriller “Seven” were he to direct it today.

“I would have a lot more fun,” he said. “It was only by the time I did ‘Zodiac’ or ‘Benjamin Button’ that I knew what I was doing.”

Still, he noted his appreciated for Pitt and Affleck.

“I offer everything to Brad, not because I’m pathetic but because he’s good for so many things,” he said. “Both Brad and Ben have a default ‘affable’ setting.  Neither wants you to be uncomfortable.”

Fincher also addressed his fearsome reputation: “I’m sure there are a lot of people who think I bite the heads off puppies,” he said. “There’s nothing I can do about that. The relationships that matter to me are always with people who wouldn’t have preconceived notions based on somebody’s work.  I gave up worrying about that years ago.”