Steve McQueen is a name so cool that two famous people have to share it: the American actor and action film icon known for films like “The Great Escape” and “Bullitt” before he died in 1980, and the Oscar-winning British film director behind acclaimed dramas like “12 Years a Slave,” “Hunger,” and “Small Axe.” Now, McQueen the director has revealed that McQueen the actor was part of his formative filmgoing experiences.

In an interview with The Messenger to promote his documentary “Occupied City,” McQueen was asked about his favorite film starring the actor who shares his name. Although McQueen initially hesitated to share, he eventually revealed his favorite to be “The Magnificent Seven.” A western remake of Akira Kurosawa’s classic “Seven Samurai” from director John Sturges, the 1960 film focuses on a group of seven American gunslingers hired to protect a Mexican village from terrorizing bandits. McQueen played drifting gambler Vin in the film, alongside an ensemble cast that included Yul Brynner, Charles Bronson, Robert Vaughn, Brad Dexter, James Coburn, Horst Buchholz, and Eli Wallach.

“This was actually one of the first movies I saw at the cinema. I went with my father to the Hammersmith Odeon, which is where David Bowie premiered with Ziggy Stardust,” McQueen told The Messenger. “I remember running my hands on the side of the walls, and it was carpeted. This is one of my first movie experiences, if not even my first. And I loved that. I loved the music, as well.”

(The director) McQueen’s documentary “Occupied City” is currently playing in theaters. Based on the book “Atlas of an Occupied City, Amsterdam 1940-1945” by Bianca Stigter, the film is a nearly four-and-a-half-hour-long exploration into the history of the Nazi occupation of Amsterdam during World War II. In his review of the film, IndieWire’s David Ehrlich called the documentary “epic” and “provocative.”

McQueen’s next film, “Blitz,” focuses on the German Blitz campaign against London in World War II, and stars Saoirse Ronan, Harris Dickinson, Erin Kellyman, and Stephen Graham. Apple distributes the film, which is currently awaiting a release date.

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