In To Rome With Love Woody Allen plays a retired classical music producer who can't quite get into the swing of not working. To him, retirement equals death. At 77 and still releasing a movie a year, that seems likely to be Woody's own personal views on the subject as well. Last week I attended a press conference for the film and I asked Woody if he ever saw himself stepping away from the movie camera and finally retiring.
Retirement is a very subjective thing. There are guys I know that retire and they’re very happy. They travel all over the world, they go fishing, they play with their grandchildren. And there are other people - and I’m one of that kind - who like to work all the time. I just like it. I can’t see myself retiring and... fondling a dog. I like to get up and work and go out. I have too much energy, too much nervous anxiety.
Now maybe I’ll suddenly get a stroke or a heart attack and be forced to retire, but if my health keeps up I don’t expect to retire. Now, the money could run out. It could be that sooner or later the guys who back the films get wise and say this is not really worth all the suffering. But I still wouldn’t retire, I don’t think. I would still write for the theater or for books.
To Rome With Love opens in limited release this weekend. Woody will then go on to start work on his next picture, an untitled movie that will finally return the Woodman to shooting in the United States after seven years working overseas (with, as pointed out in the comments, the brief exception of Whatever Works). The film, shooting this summer, stars Louis CK... and Andrew Dice Clay.