For a director whose films tend to fixate on the darker recesses of the human spirit, Paul Thomas Anderson seems like—dare we say it?—a pretty fun guy. There’s his fondness for Adam Sandler movies, for one, and his intense love of both Star Wars and Tiffany Haddish. (We don’t get the Adam Sandler part as much, but you do you, PTA.) Anderson’s post-Phantom Thread charm offensive continues in a new interview with The Los Angeles Times, where he says his kids are disappointed that all of his movies are rated “R,” and that, in response, he’s been writing a story with his eight-year-old daughter Lucy:
Well, I’m working right now on a story with my daughter Lucy. She’s 8. She has taken it upon herself, realizing that if I wasn’t going to do it, she would do it with me. We’re trying to hash out something right now. It’s a good collaboration too. It keeps you on your toes. I was trying to guide the story to something a little bit darker, where my instincts wanted to take it, and she was politely, very sweetly reminding me I was aiming it that way and brought it back. We had a good run at it and took a break. We’ve got to get back to it.
Note that Anderson doesn’t specify if this is a screenplay that they’re working on, or more of a picture-book kind of thing. And even if it is a script, projects get lost to development all the time, so we’re not going to pin our hopes on this one. But filmmakers have collaborated with their kids on movie ideas before: Take Japanese director Nobuhiko Obayashi, who came up with the story for his 1973 psychedelic horror movie House with his 10-year-old daughter Chigumi. And holy fuck, do we ever want to see Paul Thomas Anderson’s House.