Ridley Scott: I'm not all doom and gloom

Ridley Scott was surprised by the positive reaction to his 1991 movie Thelma & Louise.

Ridley Scott insists he's a cheerful person, despite helming a lot of "dark" features.

The Oscar-nominated director is best known for his epic tales such as Gladiator, Black Hawk Down and Prometheus. Despite his mostly dramatic aesthetic, Ridley explains there's more to him than serious movies, naming 1991's Thelma & Louise as a key example.

The famous flick stars Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon as two friends who go on the run after killing a man who attempted rape.

"Yeah. I can do dark things, but I’m pretty cheerful," Ridley told denofgeek.com. "That’s why I was able to do Thelma (& Louise) - I think the writer expected something different. Something more serious. I read it - same material, I didn’t alter it or anything - but I just thought it was really funny. Comical.

"But by doing that, you reach more people. If you do dark and serious, you lose 50 per cent. I felt it was a film that needed to be seen. Get out there. We got a Time Magazine cover, which I thought was very interesting. Way more reaction than I was expecting, because I was taking the problems of male-female, feminisation, as normal, natural, I’d never even thought about it."

Ridley's latest movie The Martian sees him return to the sci-fi genre. Based on the book by author Andy Weir, it follows astronaut Mark Watney's (Matt Damon) survival on Mars after his crew presume he's dead.

"(The Martian) sums me up in a way, because it’s dramatic, it has action, but it’s amusing above all things," he explained. "The most important thing is the power of the humour, and the humour leads to, connects very directly to (Mark Watney’s) control of his fear. Therefore, that control of fear is the ultimate sign of courage, really. That’s the right stuff, isn’t it?"

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