Your Favorite Filmmakers’ Favorite Films

One of the most intriguing (and unexpected) pop culture discoveries of the last week was this post from Studio 360, which revealed that they had acquired Steven Soderbergh’s “cultural diet” for the past year — a detailed, day-by-day account of the films, television, and books that the Oscar-winning filmmaker ingested from last April to this March. It’s full of interesting nuggets: his almost-obsessive viewing of The Social Network (four times), his appreciation for low culture (hello, The Room), his AMC fandom (both Mad Men and Breaking Bad pop up frequently), his programmer’s sense of pairing (he apparently prepared for the Coen Brothers’ True Grit remake by revisiting Miller’s Crossing), and his apparent speed-reading skills (dude’s knocking out dense books in a day or two). Also worth noting are his three Christmas week viewings of Raiders of the Lost Ark — each, he takes pains to note, in black and white (which we’re totally going to do now).

Soderbergh’s list got us wondering about the cultural appetites of some of his fellow filmmakers. Some are fairly easy to pinpoint, via interviews and the like; others require a bit of creative guesswork. Both are after the jump.

Quentin Tarantino

CONFIRMED: Few filmmakers have tastes more transparent than QT — and not just from the countless homages and influences clear in his own work. He programs an annual festival at the New Beverly Theater (which he now owns), and this year’s program included a Paul Mazursky double feature, Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, and the Johnny Cash vehicle Five Minutes to Live. He also frequently releases lists of his favorite films of the year; last year’s included not only expected choices like Toy Story 3 (his number one), The Social Network, True Grit, and The King’s Speech, but popcorn movies like Knight and Day and Tangled. And around the time of Inglourious Basterds, Tarantino made the above video, listing his favorite films since 1992 (the year he started making movies).

SUSPECTED: Tarantino may never quite have owned up to how much he liked the 1987 Hong Kong action movie City on Fire .