One of my nicest experiences in portraiture. Cult English filmmaker Alex Cox gained early career kudos in the 80s for features Repo Man and Sid and Nancy. A refreshing personality Alex was ebullient, engaged and at ease. We shot in an Shibuya cinema foyer, I was introduced along with FIGARO editor Asako Akai. She explained to Alex her family name meant red in Japanese, and handed him a new issue of the magazine which also happened to have a red cover. He replied with faux shock “Is this some kind of communist plot?!” The ice broken instantly, we all laughed.
Alex has a very rubbery face, which I counterbalanced by using dramatic lighting which also cast into relief the off-form concrete backdrop to nice effect. He was in Japan to promote a film he’d directed, Highway Patrolman, shot a couple years earlier on a shoestring in Mexico. Tokyo was good for international indie movies, there were a few great cinemas that championed indie movies and had loyal followers, me being one.
At the time he was living outside Madrid with his Spanish wife, and introducing a weekly film show on British TV. Never working with big budgets, he explained his approach to filmmaking as adapting to whatever the location presented, and never waiting for certain weather - just shoot it. I liked the sound of that.
Before a Q&A for his film a few days later I presented him with a print from our portrait shoot. Not sure if he liked it, but he was very gracious.