What College Meant to Writer/Director Wes Anderson

By Jake Solyst | February 18, 2016

Who is Wes Anderson?

Wes Anderson is half-average guy half-magician. His fashion, visual style, films and characters are all relatable, genuine, cool and absurdly different. He’s been making amazing cult films since the late 80’s, attracting fans of all ages and backgrounds. But at one point he was nothing more than a dude sitting in the back of a college play-write class, looking to make friends and talk movies. 

Wes Meets Owen

Among the small group of students at the University of Texas at Austin was Owen Wilson, a soon to be co-writer and actor in many of Anderson’s films. Wes was a Philosophy major and Owen was an English major which meant they both liked words and ideas. Beyond that interest was a mutual love for film. Together they would write term papers, study, talk about directors and dream up films that mystically represented their own lives.

One month, after a failed dispute with their landlord about fixing a few broken windows, the two staged a robbery and moved out in the middle of the night. This caper inspired their first film “Bottle Rocket,” in which Owen Wilson and his brother Luke Wilson play suburbanites escaping boredom by carrying out small time heists.

College Student to Indie Legend 

Having grossed over $100 million from The Grand Budapest Hotel, Wes Anderson is one of the most successful directors in Hollywood. Does he owe it all to his play-write class? Not at all. But thanks to college he did make a new friend that inspired him. And that’s really one of the best things about college. Like one of Wes Anderson’s movies, they’re full of average odd-balls that inspire one another.