Jean-Luc Godard gives filmmaking masterclass on Instagram Live

The pioneering director chomped on a cigar throughout

Director Jean-Luc Godard treated fans to a 90-minute masterclass on Instagram Live yesterday (April 8) where he spoke about his creative techniques and gave advice to aspiring filmmakers.

Godard, 89 – a pioneer of the ’60s French New Wave film movement – spoke from his home in Switzerland while smoking a cigar for a masterclass hosted by Lionel Baier, head of the cinema department of ECAL (University of Art and Design Lausanne).

Anna Karina
Anna Karina playing Marianne Renoir in the Jean-Luc Godard film Pierrot le Fou. Credit: Jacques Haillot/Apis/Sygma/Sygma via Getty Images


During the stream the director talked about his working methods, saying: “I write by hand if possible. Before I typed, but I prefer to write by hand. Very often I write very small. Afterwards, I cannot read myself again. So I have to rewrite it,” [as translated from Le Matin].

Elsewhere, he spoke about “the inadequacy of language”, a topic explored in his works, as well as how he would approach getting into the film industry should he be wanting to do so in the 21st century.

“During the New Wave, I thought that cinema should be taught at the University. As now it takes a baccalaureate X years for everything, I would rather recommend that they go home and do something else.”

Additionally, as C News reports (translated to English via Google Translate), the À bout de souffle’ director said of the COVID-19 pandemic: “the virus is a communication: like what we are doing…of which we are not going to die, but maybe we are not able to live well.”