And on this day, the 29th of March, Birthday greetings shall be passed unto none other Michael Winterbottom (1961-) British filmmaker, provocateur and all-round good-egg. Few directors have as varied a CV as Winterbottom’s (A Cock and Bull Story, Nine Songs, 24 Hour Party People), or a hit rate as patchy but, to be fair, I think that’s how it should be: Welles, Wilder, Allen and Altman all knew that a slow tedious, Kubrick-style work-rate was not the way to achieve greatness (although it worked for him).
No. Hit hard, hit often, keep moving and don’t look back. Some will be masterpieces and others will stink up the place but you’ll end up with a career full of interesting movies that collectively say more about you than any biography ever could. Pathologically incapable of sitting still he may be, but Winterbottom has the work ethic of the guys who built the pyramids and the future retrospective of an iconoclast. Good lad.
80’s French megastar Christophe Lambert was also born on this day in 1957; he’s a legend to most for starring in Highlander but he’ll always be Tarzan to me.
Blade Runner and Chariots of Fire composer Vangelis (1943-) also shares in the cake today as does geek sex symbol Lucy Lawless (who, outside of cult turns in Xena and Battlestar, turned in good guest spots in HBO shows Curb Your Enthusiasm and Flight of the Conchords and of course Spartacus). Oh dear god, the things her poor poster must have seen…