James Marsh's documentary Man on Wire is winning its share of critical praise on the way to the Academy Award nominations.

Directing 'Wire'

on December 22, 2008 by Phil Contrino

Man on Wire director James Marsh is afraid of heights.

That's ironic, considering that Wire focuses on tightrope walker Philippe Petit's successful quest to perform his death-defying art across the World Trade Center's Twin Towers in 1974.

The film, which is now available on DVD, is winning enormous amounts of critical praise. Interestingly enough, Petit didn't even like the film at first.

"To be quite blunt, I think he was a bit horrified when he first saw it. He wasn't expecting it to be the way it was," Marsh told B OXOFFICE. "To his great credit, he had this sort of fairly negative reaction when he first saw it and then he watched it with an audience and realized that the audiences was kind of following the story quite well and reacting to it."

By spending a great deal of time with Petit throughout all the stages of production, and now during the promotional aspects of the film, Marsh has picked up on an interesting dynamic that the daredevil embodies.

"One sort of very interesting observation about Phillipe is that he's boundlessly energetic and he cannot keep still in life. But of course what he does, his performance art, is almost the opposite. It's him being still and being focused and being concentrated," said Marsh.

CLICK HERE to listen to our entire interview with James Marsh.

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