Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr Viber
Trending On Empire
The Big 2015 Movie Preview
The 50 Best Films Of 2014
Review Of The Year 2014
Roar Power
Jurassic World unleashed on iTunes
Halo 5 Guardians
The Master Chief returns
Movie News

Ron Perlman Part Of Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them
And he may be a fantastic beast
Samara Weaving Will Be The Babysitter
In McG's coming-of-age horror
More Movie News

02 July 2015
Paul Thomas Anderson Tackling Pinocchio Script
For Robert Downey Jr.'s planned film of the fairy tale
More Movie News

Inherent Vice (2015)
Empire Star Rating
The Master (2012)
Empire Star Rating
The Master (2012)
Empire Star Rating
There Will Be Blood (2008)
Empire Star Rating
Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
Empire Star Rating
More new cinemas releases
DVD & Blu-ray releases

Paul Thomas Anderson On The Master
No director's cut for the '50s drama

25 September 2012  |  Written by Phil de Semlyen  |  Source: Empire Exclusive

submit to reddit

paul thomas anderson

Paul Thomas Anderson's sixth film, The Master, is perhaps his most off-kilter to date. With its Scientology subtext, it's also likely to be his most headline grabbing, although the modest filmmaker, you feel, would rather avoid all that nonsense. Nonetheless, when Empire met up with him, Anderson was happy to nip one of them in bud: Yes, Tom Cruise has seen it. Well? "The rest is between us."

Fair enough. So how did L. Ron Hubbard's singular sect inform the movie? "Listen. I know there's a long history there, but when you're investigating something, and working on it for a film, you have to learn what it is about it you like. It's just not worth it to go and make a film just to poke a hole in something."

The idea for The Master, explains Anderson, predated his loose adaption of Upton Sinclair's Oil!, There Will Be Blood, as a clutch of formless scenarios "that would kind of peter out or I wouldn't know exactly what direction it was going in".

They finally came together in a narrative that unites demobbed Marine Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix) and charismatic demagogue Lancaster Dodd (Philip Seymour Hoffman) in a devil's dance of morality, faith and turps-based cocktails. 

Not all of the Cannes show reel made the final cut - there's a scene that nods to John Steinbeck - but Anderson quashed any hopes of a director's cut down the line. "No, this it it."

The Master reaches these shores on November 2. Pick up the new issue of Empire from Thursday for more in the meantime.

Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

Laika May Rescue Henry Selick's Latest
Toon team in talks to finance the pic
Arrested Development S4 Extended?
Update: More episodes will be shot!

Your Comments

RE: Will be great!
I love you PTA. You had me at 'Drainage'. More

Posted by TheSpleen at 14:52 on 29 September 2012 | Report This Post

Will be great!
This will be great, there's no doubt. Should cause a stir with the annoying scientologists too! Including the ever irritating Mr Cruise! More

Posted by dannyfletch at 23:32 on 25 September 2012 | Report This Post

Can't wait to see this. Indie Scientologists (Scientologists who oppose Cruise's cult and its abusive practices) in the US, where it's already out, are reviewing it at More

Posted by Scientia at 21:42 on 25 September 2012 | Report This Post

EMPIRE! Please! On behalf of all normal movie lovers everywhere will you at least try- just try- to loose your fetish with that real weirdo (it's official he has been named as today's new wierdo after Michael Jackson) TOM CRUISE. This guy is so strange as we have seen recently both mentally and physically (SMALL,dark and handsome) and his recent B.O track record suggests he is only interesting when doing his "MI" thing. Yes, I know he once bought you lunch but that does not mean that More

Posted by Musicals at 19:21 on 25 September 2012 | Report This Post

Empire's Best Horror Films For Halloween
An unlucky thirteen triple-bills

Emily Blunt Talks Sicario
On the five-star thriller, puke acting and taking Tom Cruise to The Box

Denis Villeneuve Talks Sicario
On his cartel thriller and the upcoming Blade Runner sequel

Tomorrowland: The Viewing Guide
Brad Bird talks through his sci-fi adventure, scene by scene

Empire Meets Ridley Scott
The great director on The Martian, Blade Runner 2 and the Prometheus sequels

Life On Mars: Trips To The Red Planet
A dozen of cinema's Martian misadventures

10 Star Wars: The Force Awakens Toys You’ll Want To Own
Falcon quad copter? BB-8 Sphero? We’re already asking for pay raises…

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Empire print magazine

Delivered to your door – with exclusive subscriber only covers each month! Save money today and

Subscribe now!

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Empire digital magazine

Exclusive and enhanced content – get instant access via your iPad or Android device! Save money today and

Subscribe now!

Subscribe now and save up to 63%
Print, Digital & Package options available Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire Digital Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  Digital Edition  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)