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Mexican filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu ventured black comedy, new territory for him, when he co-wrote and directed Birdman.

Birdman is a very self-aware film, and he casting comes with a big wink. Michael Keaton, who years ago played a winged superhero, plays Riggan Thomson, a washed-up actor known for playing a winged superhero. Now well past his prime, he tries to redeem himself and revive his career by mounting a meaningful play on broadway. Emma Stone plays his troubled daughter Sam, and Edward Norton plays an actor brought in to give the play some clout.

Iñárritu is an award-winning director whose previous films -- including 21 Grams, Babel and Biutiful -- are dark and dramatic. The idea for this lighter film actually came out of a time of reflection, following the director's fiftieth birthday.

When it came to funding the film, Iñárritu didn't even bother going to the studios. He tells Kim Masters how to he eventually got the money, as well as the craziness that ensued from working with three other writers in multiple locations.

He also talks about his upcoming film, The Revenant, which stars Leonardo DiCaprio, and why he doesn't have a problem being known as a "difficult" filmmaker.

And as for the real-life superhero franchises that are raking in big grosses today -- they all but drive Iñárritu to despair. The director shares his thoughts on what the future of film could look like if money and popularity continue to take priority at the box office.




Kaitlin Parker