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Spike Jonze Quotes

Adam Spiegel

Spike Jonze quotes: the filmmaker’s most popular sayings.

“Getting to work on the thing that you’re always thinking about anyways is like the biggest—that’s the goal.”

“I think at the beginning of a project, you decide if you’re in love with the idea and what it’s about, or what you think it’s about at that time at least. Then you commit to it, and once you’ve commit to it no matter what, no matter how many self doubts you have, you’re in it. The ship’s sailed, you can’t turn around.”

“I never knew how to do anything before I did it, really. Like, if you were going to make a fort in your backyard you’re not going to go, like, hire someone to make your fort or go buy plans. You’re just going to have an idea for it and go make your fort.”

“I love people that willfully defy what you’re supposed to be and create their own definition of their selves.”

“When I’m making stuff, the thing that excites me most is not the result, but the process and trying to do something I’ve never done before.”

“I love when me and my friends don’t know how to make something—there’s that risk of failure, which should be there. If it’s guaranteed not to fail, it’s something you already know how to do.”

“If you compromise what you’re trying to do just a little bit, you’ll end up compromising a little more the next day or the next week, and when you lift your head you’re suddenly really far away from where you’re trying to go.”

“Be willing to get fired for a good idea.”

“Some of the best ideas come from sheer discovery, and not by some masterminded, preconceived genius.”

“Don’t differentiate between ‘this is a job’ and ‘this is what I’m doing for fun.’ It’s all simultaneous.”

“I feel like you only have so much time to make stuff. I’m definitely aware of that. I’m also excited about it.”

“I want to learn everything about everything. I want to eat it all up. I want to discover myself.”

“I knew I could write infinitely about relationships. That’s the most beautiful, most confusing, most rewarding, most heartbreaking thing in our lives—and not just romantic relationships; that’s all relationships.”

“I’m not one to intellectualize why I did something.”

“I love making things. I just love making things.”

“I was only going to go to college because that’s what I thought you were supposed to do.”

“On everything I do I’m always taking someone’s money, whether it’s a movie studio or a record label. Somebody’s paying for it, and I’m always respectful of that. But I’m never going to compromise.”

“I of course want to be responsible to somebody who’s giving me money, but I can’t let it take me off my path at the same time.”

“Our subjectivity is so completely our own.”

“As creatives, it’s a hard thing to push, to make something you’re truly excited about, especially if you’ve written 100 different concepts.”

“I’m fortunately not, like, typecast. I don’t have to just do one kind of thing; I can do all kinds of things that reflect different parts of me.”

“Obviously technology has become such a big presence in our lives and, I definitely know, in my life.”

“You get a buzz when getting texts: ‘Oh, someone’s thinking about me.’ I think people are just going to develop some sort of muscle injury. But, yeah, I definitely have that checking-the-texts thing. If I leave my phone in the car and go to dinner or something for a few hours, I’m very proud of myself.”

“I’m very nervous about taking jobs. I always make sure that, if I’m going to work with somebody, that they really understand what it is that I want to do. I’d rather not take the job than be vague about how I’m going to do something and run into trouble later on. It’s a hard thing to negotiate.”

“I like hiring people based on a feeling—this person gets it—rather than what they’ve done in the past.”

“I definitely enjoy getting to know people I find inspiring.”

“Any conversation I have with anybody that’s real is always revealing and inspiring.”

“The strengths and failings of a relationship depend entirely on your ability to talk about your feelings.”

“I like people that define their own values. I am much more interested in somebody who has their own definition of what they value, their own definition of what success is, their own definition of what love is.”

“I feel like everything I make is personal to me.”

“Emotions are messy and hard to figure out. Hard to know where you start and the next person stops. Even as an adult, that’s a hard thing to know. As a kid, it can be really scary and confusing, because it’s all new and you’re trying to sort of make your map.”

“Unpredictable emotions, positive or negative—you don’t know where they’re coming from, you don’t know what they mean. Especially negative emotions. Your own behavior. You don’t know why you’re acting a certain way and it scares you, or you don’t know why somebody else is acting a certain way and it scares you. Big emotions that are unexplained are really scary. At least to me. I guess it’s anger, or sadness, guilt—or guilt for being angry, you know. Just the whole big mess that we’re sort of thrown into.”

“You know men cry too. I actually like crying sometimes. It feels good.”

“Sometimes I think I have felt everything I’m ever gonna feel. And from here on out, I’m not gonna feel anything new. Just lesser versions of what I’ve already felt.”

“I think, as you’re growing up, your emotions are just as deep as they are when you’re an adult. Your ability to feel lonely, longing, confused or angry are just as deep. We don’t feel things more as we get older.”

“I think if something’s emotionally real—and I’m not even talking about in movies or in art, but in life—you can’t really argue with that, even if your intellectual mind might know differently.”

“Even in this world where you’re getting everything you need and having this nice life, there’s still loneliness and longing and disconnection.”

“What the world is like from a nine-year-old’s point of view? My memory is that nothing is explained to you, you’ve got to try to figure it out, pick up clues from the people around you, try to figure it out from their reactions.”

“I think there is something about… unless you come from a really evolved family that allowed you to talk about your feelings and felt like a safe environment, then you aren’t really prepared to do that when you grow up.”

“I think the way kids create is so inspiring. They’re drawing a picture? They love the picture they drew; they’re not tortured about it.”

“As a parent, your perspective of childhood is through the eyes of this person that you care so much about and you just want the world to be great for them. You want their life to be easy and happy.”

“There’s something that feels so good about sharing your life with somebody.”

“I trust myself, I trust my feelings. I’m not gonna try to be anything other than who I am. I just want to be who I am, as I am.”

“The past is just a story we tell ourselves.”

“We’re only here briefly. And while I’m here, I want to allow myself joy. So f*ck it.”

Cory Johnson: likes bumping #OnRepeat through the Bang & Olufsen sound system in his naturally aspirated V10; post-workout pumps; big boobs; dumb comedy; and your mom’s potato salad. He hates awkward handshakes. But who cares? Let’s talk about you.