Ken Loach

Bread and Roses

Interviewed by Neil Smith

What inspired you to make "Bread and Roses"?

The idea of doing a film in Los Angeles was quite interesting, but we wanted to make a film that showed the other side of the city - to tell a story about the Mexicans and ignore Beverly Hills, the swimming pools, the fast cars, and the police chases.

What was it like working in America for the first time?

It's a difficult place to make a film because so many people are working in that industry. There are set ways of working, and everybody's lost their innocence about film-making. In most other towns you're the novelty and people are keen and interested, but over there you're just a nuisance.

Was raising the money difficult?

Even though our film was very cheap by American standards ($5 million) it was a lot for us. We tried to get funding in the States but the potential investors wanted to inflate the budget, take a big cut off the top, and tell us who we could and couldn't cast.

Your films have always been better appreciated outside Britain. Does that annoy you?

I don't mind, really. They certainly do better in France, Germany, and Italy because, I think, they have a long tradition of viewing cinema in broader terms than we do. There's a wider selection of films, and they're prepared for films that deal with difficult subjects.

Read an interview with Adrien Brody, one of the stars of "Bread and Roses".

Read an interview with Paul Laverty, the writer of "Bread and Roses".