Julie Taymor — American Director born on December 15, 1952,

Julie Taymor is an American director of theater, opera and film. She is best known for directing the stage musical, The Lion King, for which she became the first woman to win the Tony Award for directing a musical, in addition to a Tony Award for Original Costume Design... (wikipedia)

There is incredible power in the arts to inspire and influence.
When I was thinking about The Lion King, I said, we have to do what theater does best. What theater does best is to be abstract and not to do literal reality.
You know, I went to Oberlin. At that time, grades were - you elected to have them or not. It was all of that era where grades were out the window. But I did very well in school. I didn't really study the arts; I practiced the arts.
I received from my experience in Japan an incredible sense of respect for the art of creating, not just the creative product. We're all about the product. To me, the process was also an incredibly important aspect of the total form.
We took Beowulf, the epic poem in Old English, and put it right together with John Gardner's contemporary retelling. If you bring it into today, we really feel that it has something very fresh to say now.

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