She is Cuba. If you want to love her, you have to be with her, but you can’t be with her in her current state. It’s the point of view of all exiles – you have to leave the thing you cherish most.
Freedom is not negotiable.
The reality is that the work I do is not private work. I bring all my secrets, my life, to my work. Anybody who’s seen my work knows everything about me.
When you commit to something, you don’t want to let your fellow people and yourself down.
I’m an exile. My father had the courage to leave with his wife, his mother and three children under twelve. It took more courage to leave, to sacrifice everything for freedom, than to stay.
Every family is dysfunctional.
They say a lot of women would like to see me naked, but there’s not a lens long enough for that.
In a marriage, in any long-term relationship, not to bother with lying. There’s no time for that. If you have any sort of secret life, it will come back to haunt you.
It’s better not to work than to work in something you don’t want to be working in.
I love to cook, and my wife loves to cook. Sometimes it’s the appeal of the simplest of dishes – things you’ve grown up with in your life. Your emotional memory – something that not only affects your taste buds but that you’ve got an emotional attachment to.
My uncle, who was a little more flamboyant, always said the guy who dressed the best was Fred Astaire.
I’m a staunch anti-Castro individual.
Everything I do in my life is very instinctual and in the moment. If I’m attracted to something, that’s it. If I have reservations, those don’t change till they’re resolved. My first impression is how I go.
I don’t think lying has any ultimate justification. I don’t think it ever leads to anything positive. The good fight to have is not to lie. That’s one of the challenges in a way.
You are defined by who you are, by your choices in life, in all regards, not just in doing movies.
I’ve had my moments of insanity. But there is a certain responsibility to set proper examples for your children, and that influences your choices in every aspect of your life.
My grandfather was a very elegant individual. My father also. He was a lawyer and farmer in Cuba. In Miami, he had to go to work wherever he could. But whenever it was time to go out, you saw how they cared for how they looked.
Children make you a better everything. Daughters open up a whole different sensibility to you. When you have children, it focuses you on them as opposed to on yourself.
You have to love the guy that you play, even if you play the villain, you’ve got to love him.
You can’t say one thing and behave another way. Kids learn more from watching you in life than what you say to them.
If you want to experiment, do something temporary.
My first interest was always music, and somehow that channelled itself into films and acting. I don’t know what the natural transition of it was. I mean I acted a little bit when I was young and like any kid would in a community theatre.
I wish we didn’t have to tell this story.
I think it’s most important for children to understand the concept of respect and manners and also work ethic. I have a responsibility to those who came before me.
Everybody has a dream, and everybody knows people who have a dream that they don’t want to share with anybody because they’re too embarrassed to share.
I’m not the type of person who goes through all this effort for a movie, and then doesn’t care if anybody sees it. I want them to see it, and I want them to see it on the big screen.
Becoming a producer enables you to empower yourself, to make the film that you want to make. I have desires to make movies – I have movies I’m developing, and things that I’m interested in.
Movies are very hard to make, to get it all to come together. So many people have their say in what the end product of films are.
I don’t control the movies that are offered to me, but I make choices based on certain parameters.
I think if the movie has resonance and stimulates the viewer to talk about it, you can have as large an audience as you want. The most important thing for me is that the movie exists. And that’s success enough already.
My son loves my carbonara. I’ve tried to master that recipe – it’s very simple but very delicate. Once prepared it must be eaten quickly.
I listen to and I play all kinds of music, and I’m interested in jazz and in bluegrass – I like it all – but Cuban music speaks to me in a certain way.
I am a traditional man. I’m a product of a traditional man. He sacrificed everything for his family.
Children need parameters, know what’s right or wrong.
If you have the right actors and you can give them the freedom to explore, you’ve done a lot of your work as a director.
When you explore a scene, the most important thing is who to cast.
There’s good movies and there’s bad movies. The genres are never dead, it’s just about how to apply them and articulate them and execute them – the story, the quality of the writing, the acting, the design elements, the directorial execution – all these things make it what it is.
It’s impossible for everybody to be in sync, even the most proper family.