Martin Scorsese Doesn’t Think Cinema Is 'Dying,' but 'Transforming'

Martin Scorsese expanded upon his opinions on the current state of cinema during a press conference at the Berlin Film Festival, where he is receiving an Honorary Golden Bear.

When asked if cinema could be dying, Scorsese said he prefers to think of the industry as “transforming.”

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“I don’t think it’s dying at all, no. I think it’s transforming,” Scorsese said. “It never was meant to be one thing. We were used to it being one thing. I grew up [with cinema] as one thing: if you wanted to see a movie you went to a theater. A good theater or a bad theater, but it was a theater. It was always a communal experience.”

He continued, “But the technology’s changed so rapidly and exhaustedly, that in a sense the only thing you can really hold on to is the individual voice. The individual voice, I must say, can express itself on TikTok or can express itself on a four-hour film or a two-hour miniseries.”

Despite the continued domination of streaming and looming threat of AI, Scorsese said that we shouldn’t “let the technology scare us.”

“Don’t become a slave to the technology — let us control the technology and put it in the right direction,” he said. “The right direction being from the individual voice, rather than something that is just consumed and tossed away.”

The legendary director also gave an update on his new Jesus film, the idea for which he said he’s still “contemplating.”

“What kind of film I’m not quite sure, but I want to make something unique and different that could be thought-provoking and I hope also entertaining,” he said. “I’m not quite sure yet how to go about it. But once we finish our rounds here of promoting the film, maybe I’ll get some sleep and then wake up and I’ll have this fresh idea on how to do it.”

Scorsese is being awarded the Honorary Golden Bear at the festival on Tuesday night alongside a homage screening of his 2006 film “The Departed.” His latest film, “Killers of the Flower Moon,” is up for 10 Oscars next month, including best picture, director, actress for Lily Gladstone and supporting actor for Robert De Niro.

In Variety‘s cover story on “Killers of the Flower Moon,” Scorsese discussed the film’s portrayal of the Osage murders, most of which were never solved.

“It’s always better to know where the hell we’ve been and who we were. That doesn’t mean we have to be the same — what do we do better?” Scorsese said. “When you hide this stuff, it’s like hiding secrets in a family. One day it comes out — there’s a complete breakdown.”

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