I: You have some wonderful stories of basically getting away with stuff at the studios.
MB: I’d learned one very simple trick: say yes. Simply say yes. Like Joseph E. Levine, on The Producers, said, “The curly-haired guy—he’s funny looking. Fire him.” He wanted me to fire Gene Wilder. And I said, “Yes, he’s gone. I’m firing him.” I never did. But he forgot. After the screening of Blazing Saddles, the head of Warner Bros. threw me into the manager’s office, gave me a legal pad and a pencil, and gave me maybe twenty notes. He would have changed Blazing Saddles from a daring, funny, crazy picture to a stultified, dull, dusty old Western. He said, “No farting.” I said, “It’s out”… You say yes, and you never do it.
I: That’s great advice for life.
MB: It is. Don’t fight them. Don’t waste your time struggling with them and trying to make sense to them. They’ll never understand.