Robert Rodriguez Has a Prime Outlet for His Guilty Pleasures

Explains how he chooses his programming


Who Robert Rodriguez

Age 45

Accomplishments Filmmaker (From Dusk Till Dawn, Spy Kids and the upcoming Sin City: A Dame to Kill For); founder/chairman of El Rey network; creator of From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series (Tuesdays 9/8c)

Base Austin, Texas

What’s the first information you consume in the morning?

The first thing I do when I wake up is I check my to-do list. As far as outside-world stuff, I try not to look at any of that until midday or later. Sometimes I’ll check Deadline and Ain’t It Cool and Indiewire for entertainment stuff.

I saw that you just did a Reddit Ask Me Anything. How did that go?

It was great! I got some really good questions. I’m going to go back and grab some of my answers and stick them in my journal because some of them were to questions that I hadn’t answered before. [Reddit users] always set the bar really high.

What’s your favorite app?

I probably use the Kindle app the most. I also use Shazam, and the regular voice recorder iPhone app, which I use to write songs or record actors’ dialogue. I like programs that don’t have a lot of steps—you can just open it up and start recording or writing. When I have to clear out apps, those are the ones that stay.

How do you listen to music?

I used to use Spotify. But I changed my passcode or something, and it’s too difficult to get back on. I just end up buying the song I want to hear on iTunes.

What TV shows do you watch?

I watched House of Cards, Breaking Bad, of course, and The Walking Dead I like a lot. And True Detective—I’ve only seen a couple of those, but I want to go binge on that when I get back home.

Do you have any guilty pleasure shows?

Well, I’ve got my own television network now, so I get to put all my guilty pleasures on the schedule! Right now Starsky & Hutch is on. Quentin [Tarantino] called me the other day and said, “I saw that Starsky & Hutch was on! And I thought, wow, I wonder what network plays Starsky & Hutch? And it was your network!” He was so excited to rewatch it from the beginning.

How do you choose your programming?

I see what’s available and what fits our brand. If I’m genuinely a fan of something, I’ll get it. If I don’t like it or watch it, I’m not going to force it on my viewers just to fill up time. Lately we’ve been showing a lot of grindhouse films and martial arts movies, and people really like the respect we show toward genre films.

What’s on your reading list?

A lot different biographies of directors. I’m working on a new show called The Director’s Chair—it’s kind of like Inside the Actors Studio, but for directors—so I’m trying to brush up on their work so I can ask good questions. I just finished reading about John Carpenter for his interview. It takes a lot of preparation, more than I had anticipated.

How do you wind down before bed?

I play cards with my fiancée and watch old Moonlightings. That’s our go-to relaxation method.