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All About Gemini: Your Complete Guide to the Sun Sign

Culture

Everything you need to know about Gemini

All About Gemini — May 20 to June 20

Symbol: The Twins

Ruling Planet: Mercury

Element: Air

Quality: Mutable

Body part: The Shoulders, arms, and fingers

Personal Mantra: I think, I seek knowledge and learning

Crystal: Emerald, Aquamarine

Colors: Yellows, Greens, Chartreuse

Luckiest Numbers: 3, 8, 12, 23

Positive Traits: Expressive, quick-witted, curious, intelligent, adaptable

Negative Traits: Scatterbrained, fickle, two-faced, nervous, inconsistent  

 

Most Likely BFFs: Aquarius, Aries, Libra, Sagittarius, Gemini

Most Likely to be Bae: Aries, Leo, Libra, Aquarius

Most Likely to be Frenemies: Cancer, Capricorn

 

Famous Geminis:

Kendrick Lamar

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen

Naomi Campbell

Johnny Depp

Angelina Jolie

Fetty Wap

Prince

Marilyn Monroe

Peter Dinklage

Venus Williams

 

No doubt, you know a Gemini—actually, you probably know more than one; Twin-born people tend to come in pairs or multiples. They will likely be the first to spark up a conversation with you (or any stranger, really) at the first opportunity to socialize. Expressive and quick-witted, Gemini makes for an animated and entertaining companion and conversationalist. However those born under this sign, roughly between May 20 and June 20, carry a powerful duality within their personalities that even they themselves can’t always predict or control. But are they boring? Nope, never.

Gemini is a highly cerebral sign whose primary personality traits can flip on a dime from being bright, openly communicative, and free-spirited to becoming unmoored in indecision and restlessness. This quality has earned this mostly whimsical and fun sign a bit of a reputation for being scatterbrained, fickle, and sometimes erratic, often getting lost in overthinking the details rather than seeing the bigger picture.

Still, Gemini won’t stop probing away inquisitively for more information and knowledge, externally or internally. Doesn’t matter where each factoid comes from—the more collected, the better!—Gemini is more interested in how that knowledge is used, or more accurately, shared. The Twins’ main source of energetic life force comes from others: Gemini is all about building interpersonal relationships, and it’s rare to find an introverted person born under this sign (unless their Rising Sign is along the lines of, say, Cancer or Virgo), though they all have their off days stuck in their own minds.

Unsurprisingly, Gemini is ruled by Mercury, the quicksilver Greco-Roman messenger god of communication and technology, which lends to this sign’s lightning-fast thought processes and sharp wit, as well as their light-footedness. (Try walking in a dense crowd with a Gemini—either they’ll cling to you tightly, weaving in and out of bodies until you get where you need to go, lickety-split, or they’ll vanish off, following their own mind’s path.) Gemini’s mercurial nature tends to make this sign a bit fidgety, too; these folks must always be stimulated or they will become bored—Gemini must never be bored!—because once they lose their enthusiasm, these personalities have no qualms with dropping everything to find something (or someone) more spirited and intellectually fulfilling.

Saying that Gemini has been given the gift of gab would be a grave understatement for these delightful and whimsical chatterboxes. Mercury—who rules matters of communication—not only makes Twin-born folks the life of the party and fascinating friends, but also sharp educators, academics, intellectuals, writers, journalists, and publishers. And for all their loquacious tendencies, Geminis are still excellent listeners, for these signs love to learn whenever possible.

Gemini’s Mercury-ruled brainpower is only amplified by their element, air, which is associated with a powerful intellect that can compel these signs to process, probe, and analyze complex concepts and abstract reasoning over and over, orchestrating the best strategies to a creative solution. Inventive and clever, the whole world’s a chess game to win to Gemini, truly the thinker’s sign of the zodiac, thanks again to their air element. Unlike other probing signs like Virgo and Scorpio, Gemini isn’t one to keep their lips zipped when it comes to their discoveries.

Gemini is one of the most bright-eyed and alert signs of the zodiac, which often drives these personalities to blurt out their most eccentric visions at odd times. Those born under the Twins tend to view the world through psychedelic, rose-colored lenses (much like their sibling air sign, Aquarius, and to a lesser extent Libra), making Gemini the fiercely curious and countercultural flower child and multidimensional oracle of the zodiac. Let a Gemini bend your ear for a while and you’re bound to be entertained or even awed by their observations—their sometimes-otherworldly messages will likely be delivered in terms that are no less than kooky. Still, their unique analysis of the world around them is tinged with spirituality and extraterrestrial wisdom, and you’re lucky if they share that with you.

All three of the zodiac’s air signs carry a special duality within them, but none is as pronounced as dramatically Gemini’s. Symbolized by the Twins, Gemini-born people are prone to polarities in their personality and are constantly in a state of flux to balance their inner properties of light and dark. This can pose as a major obstacle for some Geminis (usually the younger ones), who battle with stark mood swings and unpredictable personality shifts. You never know which one of the Twins you’re going to get on a given day with Gemini—and honestly, a Gemini not fully in control of themselves won’t know who will show up, either.

Beyond the shadow side of Gemini’s Twinning idiosyncrasies, these mercurial air signs have an uncanny ability to see all sides and facets of a situation, making them excellent mediators and judges. Gemini can balance outside perspectives like nobody’s business and are often more aware of the extenuating circumstances and influencing factors of any given situation than those intimately involved. These folks are the ones to have around when things get dicey and tangled—a Gemini will know the best way to unravel interpersonal knots with fairness and a 360-degree vision.

In their professional lives, Geminis are crystal-clear thinkers and strategizers who can harness their ability to stand in another’s shoes to deliver super-creative, well-thought-out ideas and concepts, no matter the path they take in their careers. Though like the sign preceding Gemini, Taurus, the Twins aren’t keen to dive headfirst into a leadership position blindly, but rather make invaluable team members. Because of Gemini’s extroverted and people-loving nature, these personalities work best in teams and in open, communal environments.  

Gemini’s calculating, cerebral traits tend to bleed into their personal and romantic relationships, lending an objective and oddly logical slant to how they handle love. To others, this may seem cold or unemotional at times, but rest assured, these eternal children want nothing more than a real human connection to expand their own consciousness. The trick is letting them find the most satisfying path to your heart in their own way (if you have the patience for that—and many don’t). Gemini’s energy and capacity for running in teams or cliques also influences many of these Twins to explore polyamory and free love. When it comes to Geminis, there’s never just one.

Gemini is a Mutable sign belonging to a group consisting of four signs—a “quadruplicity”—who occur at the tail-end of their season, transitioning into the next, like Gemini in late spring-early summer, Virgo in late summer-early autumn, Sagittarius in late fall-early winter, and Pisces in late winter-early spring. Gemini’s Mutable quality is saddled with going with the flow at all costs. Limber and flexible in philosophy, Gemini, along with other Mutable signs, can easily bend and adapt to any situation’s bumps and curves. These people are less concerned with what other’s think than they are with finding the smartest path with the least resistance to achieving their personal vision of success. If that means conforming to society’s more conservative paths, so be it; but if personal victory necessitates jumping from the frying pan and into the freaky fires of counterculture, Gemini will gladly take up the bohemian lifestyle.

Gemini’s chameleon-like survival skills make this sign one of the most resourceful of the zodiac. If there’s one sign that knows something about making lemonade from utter shit, Gemini is it. This ability to “make it work” at all costs—and their freeness in offering advice and support in squeezing your lemons into a tasty and refreshing cocktail—also make the Twins one of the most congenial and well-liked signs. Make no mistake, these folks have loads of friends and move fluidly and diplomatically between cliques, but they’ll never get burned out socially. Unlike Drake, Gemini loves new friends—can’t live without ‘em—and will go to great lengths to keep you in their circle if they fancy you. There’s always room for one more friend! 

Spotting a Gemini by their physical traits isn’t as straightforward as some of the more intense signs, like Leo, especially because these Mercury-ruled people are too quick to be seen and are often just a flash of a blur darting from one endeavor (or party) to the next. Twins usually possess a lithe, somewhat slender silhouette, but can also appear powerfully muscular, statuesque, thick, or big-bodied. These folks walk with a gait that makes them appear as if they are floating—or flying—on thin air. The Twins are ruled by the shoulders and tend to be either taller than average or a little shorter than most, with a stout trunk and marionette-like limbs. You can often tell who the Geminis are at a party by who the most animated talkers are, especially those who move their arms in long, sweeping motions to get their points across.

Gemini’s face is usually pleasantly proportioned and more symmetrically balanced than most (thanks to their Twin duality). Their features can be chiseled or soft, but are always luminescent with a bright, glowing curiosity to their childlike auras. The eyes reflect their spirit and are oftentimes light or crystalline in color, with long, serpentine lashes—the envy of even the most skilled makeup artists, unmatched by any falsies or eyelash extensions (seriously). Gemini’s expressive, sparkling eyes—which are known to curve into an almond-like shape—give the Twin-born faces a feline quality. Overall, these personalities lead with their mouths, so their smiles are usually their most memorable feature.

Geminis look best in all shades of yellow and gold, and take on an ethereal glow in light green hues, like chartreuse and peridot. It’s common to find a Gemini’s personal space and home decor festooned with these colors, but they work best sartorially in color-blocking schemes or incorporated into bold beauty looks, like with a shimmery serpentine emerald lip or a matte parrot green eye shadow.

Twin-born people are also known for their sporty, athletic style, and have no issue with rocking trainers, sneaks, or chic athleisure wear, even to the office. Gemini is expressive and loves to experiment with fashion, sometimes going to eccentric lengths. These folks are the sartorial risk-takers of the zodiac, though they may be much more carefree and less serious about their physical image than Leo or Libra, powerful fashion plates of the zodiac.

Shadow Side

Fun and curious, Geminis keep the party jumping—but these highly dualistic souls harbor much more than their lighthearted, flighty exteriors allow you to see. Gemini is a handful even they themselves cannot control, predict, or pacify, with a penchant for swiftly changing their minds, opinions, and even personalities.

One of the main complaints of those who become close to Gemini is their lack of consistency, especially emotionally or in matters of the heart. Gemini’s ability to see every side also compels them to want to experience all sides as deeply as possible (after all, life is nothing but a series of opportunities to learn—one big fact-finding mission), which can sometimes make these personalities seem inappropriately flirtatious, fickle, and insincere. This, again, is a quality that can inspire Twins to explore different ways of experiencing romantic and sexual love; it’s not that Gemini isn’t capable of monogamy, they just need to be stimulated by as many different kinds of energy as they can get their lithe, airy hands on.

The biggest vexation for Geminis, however, is their two-sided (and sometimes three-, four-, or five-sided) personalities. One day, your Gemini might be happy and carefree, exploring their world like they’ve just landed on a new planet while the next day they are spaced-out, moody—even sharp-tongued, sarcastic, and sassy—and totally lacking focus. Those born under this sign have to work harder than any other sign of the zodiac to stay grounded in their core integrity, lest their personalities take on a Sybil-like, Linda Blair-esque quality. This can be jarring not only for those dealing with Gemini, but for Gemini themselves. Like a young Scorpio or Leo, baby Geminis don’t know how to switch their most potent powers—in this case, their shape-shifting talents—off, and can become controlled by them if not harnessed with discipline and self-awareness.

Because Gemini is so group-oriented, these signs have a tendency to become overly cliquey with weakness for social climbing and superficiality. While most Geminis are too wrapped up in their own mind’s adventures to really care about the status quo, and make fast friendships with all kinds of people they meet—from an elderly neighbor to their barista—these people understand the thrills that access can afford. And how do you get access? Well, it’s all about who you know. But there're layers to Gemini’s desire for the keys to the in-crowd: It isn’t at all about image, it’s about wanting to know what it’s like. Knowledge is power.

An unmoored Gemini isn’t just unfocused and directionless—and this goes way beyond the bohemian lifestyle so many adopt. Twin personalities often fight very real battles with anxiety and nervousness, which can be absolutely crippling, even paralyzing, to the most agile of Gemini brains. Twins are born with a surplus of energy fit for two people, which can often result in these personalities taking on too much at one time and becoming buried in stress. Once again, Geminis need to learn how to dole out a healthy dose of grounding discipline to themselves or they will fly away like an untethered balloon. Geminis who struggle with discipline, anxiety, and overall nervousness would do well to incorporate meditation, yoga, or regular, mind-clearing exercise into their day-to-day.

Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

"I am honored to share this bonding experience with my own daughter"

In a heart-warming Instagram photo, Serena Williams shares the history of hair braiding and the importance of the tradition. The tennis player shared a photo of herself braiding her daughter Olympia Ohanian's hair and spoke about how "honored" she was to be able to "add another generation" to the tradition of the practice.

The photo shows Williams attentively braiding her daughter's hair while Olympia smiles, obviously loving the experience. Williams noted that hair braiding was created by the Himba people in Namibia, Africa, and that "we have been braiding our hair for centuries." "In many African tribes braided hairstyles were a unique way to identify each tribe," she continued.

Williams pointed out that braiding is a bonding experience. "People would often take the time to socialize," she wrote. "It began with the elders braiding their children, then the children would watch and learn from them. The tradition of bonding was carried on for generations, and quickly made its way across the world."

Williams closed her post with a sweet message about her daughter, saying that she's "honored to share this bonding experience" with her.

See the post, below.

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FROM THE WORLD WIDE WEB
Courtesy of Adidas

The Stan Smiths are a must-have

Adidas just shared its capsule of sneakers paying tribute to Keith Haring, and TBH I can already feel my wallet emptying (and they're not even on sale yet). The new collection features three shoe silhouettes, all including the late artist's iconic imagery as embroidered designs.

The standout style of the collection is the Rivalry hi-top; with bright blue and orange stripes and piping along the edges, Haring's stars and cartoon bodies, in black thread, pop right off. If you're looking for something less over-the-top, the quirky white Nizza Hi RF sneakers show a snake wrapping around the back of the shoe and chasing one of Haring's cartoon bodies toward the toe. There's also a minimal embroidered design on the toe of a classic Stan Smith pair. Look a little more closely at the tongue though, and you'll notice the traditional image has been swapped with a caricature of Haring himself.

Peep the three silhouettes, below, and set your calendar for the official drop at the end of the month.

Adidas, Rivalry Hi Keith Haring Shoes, $120, available at Adidas starting at 10am EST on June 30.

Adidas, Nizza Hi RF Haring Shoes, $120, available at Adidas starting at 10am EST on June 30.

Adidas, Stan Smith Keith Haring Shoes, $120, available at Adidas starting at 10am EST on June 30.

NYLON uses affiliate links and may earn a commission if you purchase something through those links, but every product chosen is selected independently.


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Photos by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images, Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Hopefully this one will be typo-free

In an Instagram Live on Thursday, Taylor Swift announced that she would be creating a collaboration with fashion designer Stella McCartney inspired by her upcoming Lover album. Although she kept it vague, we can only assume that the two are working on a collection of luxe merch.

Swift noted in the announcement that she has been friends with McCartney "for a really long time," and that the designer already heard the new album. "I respect what she creates, how she creates it," Swift continued. "There's so much whimsy and imagination and romance to the clothing that she designs." Swift has been wearing McCartney's designs "a lot recently," so maybe we should have seen the collab coming.

One eagle-eyed fan pointed out that Swift wore Stella McCartney rainbow-hued shoes during her Wango Tango set. If the collab is anything like these shoes, you can bet I'll be copping it as quick as I can.

Swift detailed in her Instagram Live that the album Lover would be all about romance, which makes McCartney and her feminine designs perfect for the collaboration. We just hope that this collection doesn't have any typos, like some of Swift's "ME!" merch did.

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Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

And spreads the message that "we all got crowns"

Late on Thursday, Taylor Swift dropped a new single, "You Need To Calm Down," and announced her forthcoming studio album, Lover, out this August. Following her lead single "ME!" Swift continues to spread her message of self-love and call out haters—particularly the homophobic ones—in this latest song.

Swift "ended homophobic locals," as one fan put it on Twitter, with one particular lyric: "'Cause shade never made anybody less gay."

Along with the song, Swift shared a lyric video via YouTube which made her sentiments even clearer. With her lyric, "Why are you made?/ When you could be glad?" she spelled "glad" as "GLAAD," referencing the queer media advocacy organization.

Swift sings of homophobic protestors in the second verse: "Sunshine on the street at the parade/ But you would rather be in the dark ages/ Makin' that sign must've taken all night." In the pre-chorus, she adds, "You just need to take several seats and then try to restore the peace/ And control your urges to scream about all the people you hate."

Swift additionally comments on women being pitted against each other—"We see you over there on the internet comparing all the girls who are killin' it"—asserting that "we all got crowns." There's nothing trolls can do to rain on her parade anymore.

One fan pointed out the possible symbolism of the crown lyric. In "Call It What You Want," track 14 on Reputation, she sings "They took the crown but it's alright." Now on "You Need To Calm Down," track 14 of Lover, she sings that there's not just one crown—we all have them.

Some fans are pointing to the double meaning of the track title. If I had a dollar for every time someone said those words to me in a totally condescending way, I'd probably be richer than her! What woman hasn't been told to calm down about an entirely not-calm situation or while expressing their distaste?

During Swift's live stream for the release of the song, she also announced a fashion collaboration with designer Stella McCartney, a peek of which we got during the singer's WangoTango performance.

Lover is set for August 23 release.

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Credit: Frederick Elmes/ Focus Features

"I was like, 'Did I sleep with this critic's girlfriend, or what?'"

The day I meet Jim Jarmusch, the sun hangs so bright and hot and yellow and solid in the sky that it's hard to believe that it will actually set at night. It's one of those New York June days that suggests we might be in permanent daylight; it's got a completely different feeling than the crepuscular atmosphere of Jarmusch's latest film, The Dead Don't Die, which takes place in a small town in what feels like one long twilight, maybe the last one.

But for today, Jarmusch and I are sitting at a table in a sun-filled restaurant, though we're in the shade. We're in a part of the city that used to be very punk rock, and is now very NYU, yet being there with Jarmusch, who looks so at home, like he's holding court in the booth (it helps that Larry Fessenden, an old friend of Jarmusch's and a writer/director/producer/actor, who appears in The Dead Don't Die, happens by the table to say hi), makes the area feel a little punk rock again, even with all the sun.

The Dead Don't Die is a very punk rock zombie movie, by which I mean: It's not very scary, but it is very cool, and even when it's sneering, it's a little bit tender. Starring Bill Murray, Adam Driver, and Chloë Sevigny as a trio of small-town cops who fight back against a nascent zombie apocalypse caused by fracking, the film is cast with a who's who of Jarmusch regulars, like Steve Buscemi, Tilda Swinton, Iggy Pop, and Fessenden, to name a few; but it also features younger stars like Caleb Landry Jones, Selena Gomez, and Luka Sabbat—and there's a real earworm of a theme song, courtesy of Sturgill Simpson.

Below, I speak with Jarmusch about the movie, being a dilettante, and why he only reads his negative reviews—which is definitely one of the most punk rock things I've ever heard.

Photo by Gareth Cattermole/ Getty Images

This was filmed on a pretty condensed shooting schedule, right?
It was a very rough schedule. A very difficult one, actually.

We only had seven weeks to shoot, and we had to shoot Adam Driver out in three weeks because he had to be delivered to Star Wars, and the financing of the film was incredibly grueling and took a long time, so we were pushed so far that we had about one month of prep, and then three weeks with Adam. And then all these different actors coming in and out; I don't know how Carter and Josh, the two producers, organized it all. And then we'd shoot 15-hour days, and halfway through, I had walking pneumonia; I had two coats; it was 95 out; I was shaking. You know, just weird stuff like that. But it's all okay because we had such great people—our crew—everybody. And then, the visual effects were very taxing and complicated.

How did that all work together? Because there's more than one decapitated head.
Yeah, it's a mixture. First of all, we mixed prosthetics with makeup with masks for some of the zombie stuff, but all of those effects with the decapitations, we had to just imagine. So we had to choreograph everything and then only imagine kind of what it would be like, which was, for me, very abstract because I'm not very versed in visual effects. You know, you had to really kind of trust your instincts, because Adam Driver's chopping away with a machete with no blade.

It could've been a machete, it could've been a lightsaber, who knows? So, to what degree is this a sequel of Paterson with Adam Driver's character's last name being Peterson?
Well, I just do these things to amuse myself while writing, you know? Bill Murray in Broken Flowers was named Don Johnson, and in this, I gave him the name Cliff Robertson. Tilda Swinton's character is Zelda Winston. Rosie Perez is named Posie Juarez. You know, I'm just kind of amusing myself.

And Peterson, Paterson. While we were filming Paterson I was always teasing Adam that the next one, we would make was gonna be a sequel about a psychopathic murderous bus driver named Peterson. Tag line: "Get the fuck off my bus!" Or "Next Stop Hell!" You know, stuff like that. It's just to make them... I love trying to make Adam Driver laugh, because he has a very odd and wonderful sense of humor, but it's on the dry side, so I'm always joking around with him between work to try and see what makes him laugh.

But yeah, there's no sequel of any kind, and I don't think that way, and I don't plan, and I don't see my films from the past ever again. I just look toward the next thing.

Credit: Frederick Elmes/ Focus Features

What was the original concept for this? When did you start coalescing all of these different elements into knowing that you wanted it to be your next film?
Some years ago after Only Lovers Left Alive, Tilda kept teasing me, calling me, saying, "When do we do the zombies? When are we doing the zombies?" And in between I made Paterson and Gimme Danger, but then after those I started writing the zombie one, and my original conception was: I wanna make a film that's really funny and silly like Coffee and Cigarettes, where people talk about whatever nonsense I want them to, and I want to get actors I love, you know? So I thought, okay, if I make a zombie film, I can have a structure where different groups are cordoned off against the zombies, and the zombie attacks will be intermittent and not very long, so I'll have long lags where they're just stuck there, like in the house of The Night of the Living Dead, where they can talk about any kind of nonsense. So that was my first idea, and then when I started writing it, for some reason, I wanted to have a small town, Centerville, and I just followed my intuition, and it became this, I don't really know why beyond that.

What is it about small towns that make them the perfect setting for existential terror?
They're insular. They're kind of… everyone kind of knows each other. It's controllable by the characters. It's believable that everyone kind of know each other. I don't know. I'm not very good at analyzing that. And also, this is not a horror film because horror films use devices that are necessary to frighten people, like suspense, and then you get scared. We have no interest whatsoever in that. This is more of a metaphorical zombie film, but I would not call it a horror movie. It's a comedy with zombies with a kind of sad ending. Beyond that, I don't know what it is.

And horror nerds may not like it if they're expecting creepy, creepy, scary thing! They're not gonna get it. They're not gonna get that delivered to them.

What's interesting about it is seeing who fights back against this existential dread. Or, like, Chloë Sevigny's character, Mindy, doesn't fight, she is on her own separate trip, avoiding the end till she embraces it.
It's a character film. It's not even a plot film, really, although critics say that about all my films. But Chloë… it's a complicated thing, because when I first called Chloë, I told her... I wrote her a letter, and then she said, "Yeah, yeah I'd like to do this." And I said, obviously, this is not a feminist character. She's reactive. She's our sort of "Scream Queen." She screams like six times. But Chloë is the master of reaction, and I love watching her react.

She definitely feels like a stand-in for what a normal person would feel during these absurdist experiences, which is nice to have. It's not necessarily that you need a relatable character in a movie like this, but...
Yeah, but she's an empathetic human that's in a job with some authority, but in a small town where that means taking care of whatever, you know, as a police officer, pretty minimal [stuff]. There's not a lot of rampant crime or anything going on… or anything at all, really.

Credit : Frederick Elmes / Focus Features

A lot of people are going to be projecting tons of different meanings onto this film, like with all your films. To what level do you participate in that or pay attention to that? Or, once you're done making a film, is it just out there, and you just let people project onto it whatever they will?
I've always felt that anyone's interpretation of a film that I write and direct is probably more valid than my own. Because it's a funny thing, the beauty of films is going into a world—or a book or whatever—but going into a world that you don't know, and you are entering a world, and it takes you. And if you wrote it, and you were there filming it, and you're in the editing room every day for six months, the mix, and all that... I can never possibly see it. I like hearing what friends or people I know... I like Q and As after screenings because they have no agenda except their interest. I like that a lot, and I value that. I don't really like to read a lot of reviews unless they're really negative. I love the negative ones.

You do?
Yeah, because they must be very far from me in their perception of the world, and that is interesting to me. But I try not to read a lot...

I think you're probably the first person who I've ever spoken to who says they like to read the negative reviews.
I really like them. The worst one I ever got in my life, I laminated and used to carry in my wallet. It was a brief thing from a right-wing French [paper], maybe Le Figaro or something, of a film called Dead Man that we made, and they said—this is the English translation—"The French intelligence celebrates Jarmusch in the way death and blind parents would celebrate their retarded child. Jarmusch is 33 years old, the same age as Christ when he was crucified. We can only hope the same for his film career." I was like, Whoa! That is harsh! I'm keeping that one!

It gets personal.
But that was vicious. I was like, Did I sleep with this critic's girlfriend, or what? What happened? It was really... the knife was sharpened, you know.

That speaks to a very specific kind of agenda for sure.
A friend of mine Amos Poe, he's sort of a mentor of mine, a punk filmmaker, whatever, and when we were young when he made, in the late-'70s, one of his films—The Foreigner or Unmade Beds—the New York Times called it "the cinematic equivalent of kindergarten scribbling," and he put that on his posters and put "New York Times" and we were like punks, we were like, "Yes! Amos! That's great!"

I mean, it genuinely is a pretty great pull quote, and I think also a little bit oblivious to the charms of a kindergartener's scribbles and what the value is in that anyway.
Yeah, it was kind of accurate in a positive way, and they intended it as very negative.

In this film, there are so many actors who are veteran actors, but there are also a lot of younger actors. What do you like about the combination of that dynamic?
I just like the variety of sort of world perceptions—indicated in a very minor way when Bill Murray's character says, "I've known Hermit Bob since we were in junior high," and Adam's character says, "Oh, wow! That must've been like 50 years ago!" And Bill says, "Yeah. It was." But just the kind of difference of perception of age I find as I get older really interesting. And I'm very interested in young people, especially teenagers, because I think they form our sense of style, of music, of so many things, and yet they're kind of pushed around and treated badly and constantly told, "You don't know how the world really works! You're just a teenager!" But they gave us poetry. They gave us Mary Shelley and Rimbaud and chess masters, and all the great music comes a lot from teenagers. So I tried to keep a pulse, that's why the three teenagers, I would not let them turn into zombies. There are only four people [who don't get turned by zombies]: those three that are delinquents, and the Tom Waits character, who's already removed himself from the social order long before.

When the zombies become zombies, they all have one inciting thing that they're still pursuing in the real world. Do you have one thing that you think you would pursue if you were a zombie?
You know, it's hard because I'm a self-proclaimed dilettante. I'm interested in so many things, I don't know if I would be breaking into a bookstore, or if I would be in the alley outside of a movie theater, or if I would be trying to get into a guitar shop. I'm not sure. I have a lot of interests.

I mean there's a way in which it's a really tender portrayal of the human impulse to just seek out these things that they love.
It's not totally a critique; it's their vestigial memory of some things that they were drawn toward, whether it was power tools or oxycontin.

The Dead Don't Die is in theaters now.

Credit: Frederick Elmes/ Focus Features