“You knew you were in the presence of a great man with Antonioni; he was an auteur supreme. He wanted everything exactly right. We had also heard how particular he was about colours. I’m colour-blind so I can’t tell, but he was supposed to have sprayed the grass at Greenwich Park because he wasn’t happy about the green. He was even said to have changed the colour of the marijuana in Blow-Up because he thought it was the wrong shade.
I have never had such close coaching from any other director, and many actors wouldn’t stand for it. Finally, on take 13: ‘Cut. Print. Good. Peter, come with me.’ So he took me off set and said to me, ‘Peter, I understand. You wish to show the world what a fine actor you are.’ He got that right. ‘When you work with other directors you give them your performance and they film it. Not with me, Peter. You see I have chosen you for how you look. I have chosen all your clothes. If I move my camera six inches, I would ask you to do that line in a different way.’
Upon this, he put his arms around me and held me close to him and said, ‘Peter, believe in me. Trust me. I am not God, but I am Michelangelo Antonioni.’
-Peter Bowles on the making of Blow-up (via)