So do you think it’s unwinnable?
I do. I think whenever you put white men into that kind of foreign culture you’d better be prepared to stay for the rest of your life (laughs).
Having made nearly 20 films, do you remember all your bad reviews?
Well it’s hard to remember as there’ve been so many [laughs]. I will normally remember if there’s a negative review for a film in a major publication because that can hurt.
But you can’t quote them word-for-word?
Are you kidding? I don’t even remember some of the people I slept with.
What about difficult actors? Richard Dreyfuss called you a fascist after W...
Dreyfuss? He and I don’t get along. That one I will admit to you. Sayonara! That just didn’t work. It’s one of the most painful experiences I’ve ever had as a director.
For any particular reason?
I don’t care to go into that but if anyone else can work with him, hats off to them. In general, 95 per cent of my actors are a delight but sometimes it happens. Every railroad has a knot in the track.
You went to Yale at the same time as George W Bush. Did you ever run into him back then?
Yeah, I went to the same class as George Bush but, remember, I left after two years. He finished up and I didn’t, so he became president.
Ah, so that’s the way it works.
You’ve also had LSD therapy. What was that like?
Look, I did a lot of it when I was younger. Not a whole lot but enough to appreciate it, so I went and had a supervised trip in the early Noughties as an older man, which was very interesting. That time it was supervised and professionally done. They should legalise it, It’s one of the most advanced drugs in the world and it’s been used in many hospitals for helping people.
Finally, is it true that your dad paid for you to lose your virginity to a prostitute at 16?
Oh please, you have every note on this. I’m not going to deny it. This story just doesn’t end. You’re so prudish you English! (Laughs)
Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps is in cinemas nationwide from 6 October
Main image: Uli Heckmann/Corbis Outline/Kobal