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Roman Coppola Returns To Directing

The filmmaker discusses bringing Charlie Sheen along for the ride

In the 12 years since his first feature film – the highly stylized 1960s sci-fi romp CQ – Roman Coppola stayed plenty busy. The son of filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola (and brother of director Sofia) has a hand in the family winery, worked as a writer on films including Moonrise Kingdom and The Darjeeling Limited and is running his own production company, The Director’s Bureau.

Thankfully, the multi-talented 48-year-old got back behind the camera for A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III, his just-released madcap comedy, featuring over-the-top performances from Charlie Sheen, Patricia Arquette, Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman.

While Coppola admits he’d rather not wait another dozen years to make his next movie, finishing this one does leave him feeling somewhat relieved.

“I’m enjoying the sensation of being free from the gnawing feeling of having to finish a film,” the director says with a laugh. “I’m taking a moment to enjoy being off the hook.”

Here, Coppola answers a few of DuJour‘s nosy questions.

So far, what has been the best day of your life?
There’s a memory that pops to mind of when my dad bought a 1913 ford Model T. he said we’d go for a drive, and I remember going across the Golden Gate Bridge. The car broke down, and we ended up having an adventure on the side of the road. It’s a wonderful, symbolic memory of those times when you don’t know where you’re going.

The worst?
I’d rather not talk about it.

If you could spend a day in someone else’s shoes, who would it be?
Errol Flynn on the set of The Sea Hawk.

What’s your favorite hour of the day?
Early in the morning, between 7 and 8. There’s quiet, and you’re not expected to be available.

If you could relive one day in history, what would it be?
I’d love to be on the set during the filming of Young Frankenstein when they’re doing “Puttin’ on the Ritz.”

What’s the best conversation you had today?
I’m preparing a commercial project, so I’m talking a lot with a storyboard artist. Being in a session with an artist and collaborating is an exciting thing to do.

If you had to wear a uniform every day, what would it be?
A Battistoni suit with Albertelli shirt, Morini shoes and an E. Marinella tie. It’s what I’m wearing today.

I didn’t want to but today I…
Checked my e-mails. It’s generic, but true.

How would you spend your last day on Earth?
It’s corny, but with my family. Maybe in Kyoto, eating good food and relaxing under a cherry blossom tree.