While he’s become a huge international action star, Vin Diesel got his start making personal little indie movies. Just last week, I wrote about his feature directorial debut, 1997’s Strays, which I described as “his own version of Swingers or Clerks, a semi-autobiographical indie about a bunch of dudes in their 20s hanging out in lower Manhattan.” He also made a short film called “Multi-Facial,” which got the attention of Steven Spielberg, who then cast him in Saving Private Ryan.

That film kicked off his acting career, and Diesel never looked back; in the 20-plus years, he never directed another feature. Who knows whether that will change in the future, but according to Diesel himself (via The National), he’s heard from at least one respected source that he needs to get back to work as a filmmaker.

Diesel says he saw Spielberg again recently, and he said...

When I wrote the role for you in Saving Private Ryan, I was obviously employing the actor, but I was also secretly championing the director in you, and you have not directed enough. That is a crime of cinema and you must get back in the directing chair.

It seems naive to expect anyone to direct anything at this point in the coronavirus pandemic. But it will be interesting to see whether Diesel heeds Spielberg’s advice. I mean, when one of the best directors who ever lived tells you to direct more movies, you should probably listen.

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