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Entertainment behind the scenes

An unforgettable chat with Anthony Minghella


Anthony MinghellaEvery once in a while, if you’re lucky and in the right spot at the right time, you get an interview that can stay with you a lifetime.

Eleven years ago while covering the Berlin Film Festival, I sat down with British director Anthony Minghella, who died in a London hospital on Tuesday at the age of 54.

His new film “The English Patient” was screening at the festival when news arrived that it had just picked up 12 Academy Award nominations. Minghella was obviously elated, especially because, as he explained, he had spent four years trying to get the film made that none of the major studios wanted to touch.

“The nominations are beyond any dream anyone is entitled to have,” he said with a wide smile. It was an interview in a Berlin hotel lobby that was supposed to be 10 minutes but ended up lasting nearly an hour — and has stayed with me ever since.