Danny Boyle is about to premiere his latest production – not a movie but a stage show, the opening ceremony for the 2012 London Olympics.
Is Boyle, or any movie director, the right person to direct this type of show? The answer is: if anyone is. Making a feature film requires collaboration between hundreds, or thousands, of different artists and professionals, while still retaining a clear artistic direction. I think that almost by definition the director has to be an egotist and a control freak, otherwise the artistic direction won’t survive and you end up with something designed by committee which we all know is a bad thing. Filmmaking also needs understanding of how a complex narrative can be told, without words, through a short montage or a single moving image (moving in both senses). So for making the ceremony clear and meaningful, and for keeping the team together, a movie director is probably a good choice.
Whatever form the Opening Ceremony takes tonight, I’m sure it will be quirky, eccentric and personal, will not feature CGI-enhanced fireworks or dubbed performances, and will be fun to watch. So, in the words of another great American statesman, it’s time to let the sun in and shine on us, because today we’re happy and tomorrow we’ll be happier.