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'American Hustle' team backstage at the 2014 Golden Globe Awards

The 71st annual Golden Globe Awards took place on Jan. 12, 2014, at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, Calif. Here is what these Golden Globe winners said backstage in the Golden Globe Awards press room.

"American Hustle" team at the 2014 Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, Calif.
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Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy

How does it feel to win this award?

David O. Russell (director/co-writer): We were proud of our picture and proud of our actors.

Megan Ellison (producer): I just want to say about David O. Russell that he’s the most amazing filmmaker that I have ever worked with.

American Hustle” is such a wonderfully written film, but it also has an improvisational feel. What was the last thing you took out but you didn’t want to?

Russell: First, I wanted to correct the improvisation. But [Bradley] Cooper himself will talk about you can’t make a film like that and improvise it. You write every screen every time, but it has to have a structure, five major characters, three or four secondary characters. You have to write it. Some things that came out that broke our heart, there are a lot of things that go in and out. Do you guys remember?

Christian Bale and Jeremy Renner had some wonderful scenes together that were very difficult to cut out where they tried to get legitimate financing, and I want to put them on the DVD because they are fantastic scenes. Irving is trying to get legitimate financing, and all Carmine wants to know is if Rosalyn put metal in the microwave because it is a bad sign. That was a hard scene to take out.

It is an embarrassment of riches. You push them and write as much as you can and you have to pick. I believe the movie should move fast. My greatest compliment is from John Matracelli, who runs a construction company in Long Island, who said, “That went by in 15 minutes, and I wanted to spend more time with the characters.”

That’s what we try to do, is feel emotion and make it go before you can look back. All these guys are in the other room with us, as well as Bradley Cooper, and any actor is welcome to chime in. It is collaborative process.

Did you know going into “American Hustle” that it would have a lot of award-season buzz?

Charles Roven (producer): We actually were just really focused on getting the movie shot and then getting the movie edited, had a very short period of time to prepare, make it and finish it and try to do the best that we can. We are really completely thrilled that it’s been embraced by the critics and the people and very humbled by it.

David, you get a lot of credit for writing strong female characters. How do you do that?

Russell: My mother was a very strong Italian woman from Brooklyn, bless her soul. I realize a lot of it is my mother. Strong women characters are the gateway to a powerful movie, and I did that in “Silver Linings” and “American Hustle.” I do that a lot for my actors. You write the roles for all these people, and that makes me try harder and that makes them try harder. It is a beautiful process to be part of.

Originally you entered “American Hustle” as a drama and the Golden Globes changed it?

Russell: I don’t know about that.

What do you think about “American Hustle” being called a comedy?

Russell: Listen to me. I thought my first movie was a very intense movie, and it was put in the comedy section. I implicitly find human beings if they are real, my own relatives, anybody I know, that’s how I find human beings. I am happy if it goes either way. Sometimes the most heartbreaking things are the funniest things.

Roven: That’s what’s amazing about David’s writing, is it is so rich and so many talented actors play these roles because they are so rich, they do make you laugh and cry sometimes in the same scene.

For more info: Golden Globe Awards website


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