Sam Mendes was an acclaimed British theater director before making an astonishing screen debut with 美国丽人 (1999), a satirical, compassionate, highly theatrical dark comedy set in contemporary American suburbia. The film, starring Kevin Spacey and Annette Bening, won five Academy Awards, including Best Director and Best Picture. For his second film, 毁灭之路, Mendes ventured into a mythological American landscape to create a 1930s period film about gangsters, fathers and sons, violence, and redemption. Exquisitely crafted and deeply felt, 毁灭之路 further establishes Mendes as a distinctive cinematic stylist, and as a remarkable collaborator. He talks about working with two screen icons—Tom Hanks and Paul Newman—and about his creative partnership with the great cinematographer Conrad Hall, who received a posthumous Academy Award for 毁灭之路.