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M. Night Shyamalan reveals horrific details of collaboration with Miramax and Harvey Weinstein

The famed director's first collaboration was anything but a dream.

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In connection with the premiere of the new film Knock at the Cabin, director M. Night Shyamalan has, as usual before a premiere, conducted a whole host of interviews. In one of these, with The Hollywood Reporter, he talked about what it was like to break into the dream factory. He may still be best known for The Sixth Sense, but the year before he was in the middle of the Hollywood buzz with the comedy-drama Wide Awake, starring Denis Leary, Dana Delany and Rosie O'Donnell. It didn't go well. It barely grossed three million dollars, with a budget of about 60 million, but the door was opened, for better or worse. While it was a path to success, the collaboration with Miramax and Harvey Weinstein was anything but frictionless. Here's what he told The Hollywood Reporter:

"I made Wide Awake for Miramax and Harvey Weinstein. I went through my own personal hell being there, but it was trial by fire. I didn't realize it at the time, but I started my career with the biggest monster that ever was. I was in that room with him all the time while he would say crazy things, but it built me up because I'm a softie. I love to play a lot of basketball, but if I get elbowed, I become a different person. And Harvey, clearly, would elbow you, so that created a warrior mentality in this soft kid from a sweet, loving family. But when I looked at the situation at Miramax, it felt like my career was over.

My reps said, "Miramax owns your directing. You can't direct anywhere else." In those days, contracts were crazy, and Miramax had some really tough contracts. But by some freak chance, they didn't own my writing. It was an error by their legal department, so I said, "I'll write the best screenplay ever and try to get out of here." So I sat down and looked at the Jaws, Alien, The Exorcist and Poltergeist posters on my wall and said, "I'll just write one of those. I love those." So I went into genre and suspense for the very first time, and everything just clicked. I was having so much fun. I had unlimited ideas."

So thanks to a loophole in the contract, he was able to make The Sixth Sense and produce it with Buena Vista Pictures and the rest is, so to speak, film history.

Knock at the Cabin is in theatres now.

M. Night Shyamalan reveals horrific details of collaboration with Miramax and Harvey Weinstein

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