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The David Lynch Quote Collection

David Lynch

Test Screenings

"They're like facing the firing squad. Except you don't die."

"I didn't realize it when I signed the contract [for Wild at Heart] but I was required to be there at the screenings, to see what really went down. I wasn't a great believer of tests before this, but I learned something very valuable, and I now believe in them wholeheartedly. What I'd done was just far too strong. If I'd had 15 test screenings for Dune [instead of one], I might have been able to save that movie."

"Even with only ten people, you can feel a film differently than if you see a film by yourself. By yourself, you're too relaxed, and you're not really forced to get that feeling of many people in the room which is a horrific feeling, sometimes, but it forces you to see a film through a group's eyes, and you can learn a lot of things from it. Up to that time, you've been working scene by scene and getting the individual scenes working; but seeing it all at once, it could work great scene by scene, but as a whole, it doesn't."

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