Pedro Almodóvar Interviews Pedro Almodóvar

I'm sitting at the keyboard in my briefs and t-shirt. I can see Fifth Avenue through my windows. I take advantage of this seclusion to interview myself.

Q: Why?

A: To announce the re-release of I'm So Excited in theaters.

Q: So?

A: Re-releases are for summer. It's a custom that's been lost in Spain and I'm pushin for a comeback.

Q: Isn't it a bit soon for a re-release of I'm So Excited? Shouldn't you wait at least 20 years for the movie to maybe become a classic?

A: Not today, everything goes by so quickly. As a matter of fact, in the time it's taken to write this text, I'm no longer in New York. I'm in Los Angeles, and under my terrace, I can hear the roar of cars on Sunset Boulevard. Getting back to the topic of the re-release, I would recommend anyone who has the chance to premiere and re-release to do it as soon as possible. I'm not sure we'll have movie theaters a year from now.

Q: But your movie premiered only a few months ago.

A: That's why it's time to re-release it. I hope my followers who saw it once or twice will see it again. My latest movie benefits from repeated viewing, I'm not kidding. One of the advantages of re-releasing it so soon is that, besides the tickets being cheaper, there will be no reviews.

Q: Isn't the real reason that the ticket sales were disappointing and you want to try again?

A: In the first half, I'm So Excited was the highest-grossing movie in Spain, unless you count Iron Man 3 as a Spanish movie because there's one script assistant who's Spanish.

Q: You're in Los Angeles. How are things going there?

A: The chances look good, that's what the distributor, Sony Pictures Classics, says. But I'm embarrassed to see them so certain. The movie business is anything but an exact science, but the guys at Sony Pictures Classics see it plainly. I don't say anything; that's their territory. The reactions at press screenings are very positive and in the two premieres we had in New York, at Lincoln Center and the Sunshine cinema -- uptown and downtown, respectively -- the reaction has been marvelous. I've witnessed it, along with my brother, Kathleen Turner, Marc Jacobs, Zachary Quinto, Patricia Clarkson, Paul Auster, Siri Hustvedt, Diane Von Furstenberg, Rose Byrne, Miguel Ángel Silvestre, Blanca Suárez, Carlos Areces and many other young artists from the New York scene.

Q: Are you worried about what American critics will say?

A: Not really.

Q: Do you expect the Spanish Film Academy will choose your movie for the shortlist of candidates to represent us Hollywood?

A: I'm already in Hollywood, that's what it's about, to get our movies seen here. And as I've said, the chances are very good, according to Sony, though they can make mistakes. It's too soon to think about the shortlist. Amazing movies could premiere in the next three months. What really worries me is returning to Madrid, getting over the damned jet lag -- which hits me very hard -- decide which movie I want to do next and finish the screenplay to my satisfaction. Those are my concerns. Oh, and living, of course.

Q: And are you worried about the situation in Spain?

A: Very, but I take advantage of this three-week absence to forget about it.

Q: You don't forget completely. The press has aired some of your statements about the monarchy.

A: I read them, and I was horrified. I don't speak like that, that story was excerpted from the questions of a Spanish EFE correspondent during a roundtable in which we all spoke English. What I said was filtered through his own translation and paraphrasing, not mine, so I don't own up to it. I don't call anything or anyone filthy, the term I used was "disgusting" and the tone was light and conversational. I don't like how that came out. For whichever part I played, I'm sorry.

Q: Let's switch gears, from the King Juan Carlos to Pope Francis. What do you think about the Vatican Gay Lobby the pontiff revealed?

A: I'm anxiously awaiting further news. I'm very interested in anything related to sexuality in the Vatican. Maybe if the lobby is powerful enough -- and I'll bet it is -- the new pope will abolish celibacy. I think the elimination of the vow of chastity would solve many problems at the heart of the church and people would approach it.

Q: Wouldn't you like to do a Hollywood film on that theme, with the American actors you admire?

A: The topic is attractive, of course. Why not? I like coming here. It lets me see my life and career from afar. It's good to change perspectives. Besides, I have good friends here and my personal Hall of Fame grows with every visit. But every time I leave Madrid, I have a round-trip ticket. I'm too old to change languages, cultures and cafes.