By Missy Schwartz
Updated February 13, 2004 at 05:00 AM EST

Hours after becoming the first American woman to be nominated for a Best Director Oscar, Lost in Translation auteur Sofia Coppola called. We gladly answered.

In the ”Lost on Location” making-of doc, what’s the word you and the crew chant?

That’s a family tradition. Ever since I can remember, on the first day of shooting, my dad and brother say pooaba three times for good luck. I don’t know what it means, it’s just a magic word from my dad’s theater days.

The doc also shows Bill Murray testing out his Japanese. Did you have any favorite phrases?

I’ve always been intimidated by the language, so no, I left the Japanese to Bill. [Laughs]

Are you excited to see the movie released in Japan this March?

I have a lot of respect and love for Tokyo, so I’m curious. I thought it might be boring, like if someone did a movie about Los Angeles.

What’s more gratifying: the accolades or Bill saying this is his favorite movie?

Oh, Bill. That was the best. I’d take that. [Pause] It’s nice to have both, though.

Lost in Translation

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