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Intelligent Times: Willem Dafoe on Adventure, Artistry and a Life in the Movies

Willem Dafoe came to our stage to discuss his long and varied career and his upcoming film, The Lighthouse.

Podcast coming soon.

AN INTELLIGENT TIMES EVENT

Intelligent Times is a live event series collaboration between The New York Times and Intelligence Squared, bringing together leading New York Times journalists and thought leaders to discuss the key issues facing the globe today.

Willem Dafoe is internationally respected for bringing versatility and boldness to some of the most celebrated films of our time. His artistic curiosity in exploring the human condition leads him to projects all over the world, large and small, Hollywood films as well as independent cinema.

One constant thread in his life has been his attraction to strong, visionary directors, and he has worked with a virtual encyclopedia of modern cinematic giants, allowing him to express his spirit of adventure in over one hundred diverse roles across film and theatre.

Upcoming projects include Robert Eggers’ The Lighthouse, Edward Norton’s Motherless Brooklyn, Ericson Core’s Togo, Dee Rees’ The Last Thing He Wanted and Abel Ferrara’s Tommaso. He recently completed filming Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch and Abel Ferrara’s Siberia.

Dafoe has been recognised with four Academy Award nominations: Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Platoon, Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Shadow Of The Vampire , Best Actor in a Supporting Role for The Florida Project, and most recently, Best Leading Actor for At Eternity’s Gate. Among his other accolades, he has received four Golden Globe Award nominations, four Screen Actors Guild nominations, a BAFTA award nomination, the Venice Film Festival Volpi Cup, as well as a Berlinale Honorary Golden Bear for Lifetime Achievement.

Dafoe is one of the founding members of The Wooster Group, the New York-based experimental theatre collective. He created and performed in all of the group’s work from 1977 to 2005 and has also been seen in a range of domestic and international theatre productions.

Dafoe came to our stage in December 2019, as part of our new series ‘Intelligent Times’ – a partnership between Intelligence Squared and The New York Times. In conversation with Matthew Anderson, European culture editor of The New York Times, he discussed his long and varied career and his upcoming film, The Lighthouse, a black and white metafiction in which he stars alongside Robert Pattinson.

As part of our collaboration with The New York Times, take advantage of a special digital subscription offer. With investigative reporting and analysis from experts in the field, The New York Times uncovers the stories that impact the world.


Speakers

Speaker

Willem Dafoe

Internationally renowned actor


Having made over one hundred films in his legendary acting career, Willem Dafoe has been nominated four times for an Academy Award. Upcoming projects include Robert Eggers’ The Lighthouse, Edward Norton’s Motherless Brooklyn, Ericson Core’s Togo, Dee Rees’ The Last Thing He Wanted and Abel Ferrara’s Tommaso. He recently completed filming Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch and Abel Ferrara’s Siberia.
Chair

Matthew Anderson

European culture editor of The New York Times


European culture editor of The New York Times, based at The Times's bureau in London. He oversees coverage of the arts and entertainment in the region, with a focus on how the arts and entertainment cross over with news and current affairs. Matthew joined in 2017 from the BBC, where he was the editor of the BBC.com homepage, and then the inaugural editor of BBC Culture, an online art and entertainment site aimed at digital users outside the UK.

 

Speakers are subject to change.