Trying to figure out why people do what they do, even when you're interviewing them, can be a monumental task – as much for them as for you. Spirits are moved, muses are called upon, and in Hollywood, careers must often be maintained, but getting to the heart of what motivates filmmakers to take on challenges can be confounding because one suspects that it's not altogether different than what prods us in our daily lives – basic interest, casual discovery, or even arbitrary whim. Thankfully, however, with folks like Peter Jackson, there's almost enough information on how he does what he does that dissecting the reasons why seems redundant, or at least unnecessary.

Jackson's latest film is The Lovely Bones, an adaptation of Alice Sebold's acclaimed novel of the same name. Suffice it to say that the reasons precisely why this project would become his follow up to four of the biggest and most epic fantasy films ever made – the Lord of the Rings films, and a remake of King Kong – remain hovering somewhere in the ether; but Jackson's technical and artistic clarity at the film's recent press day leaves no mystery how he mounted a production of one of the year's most-anticipated films.

What were the challenges of adapting this? What did you have to leave out? And how much consideration was given to satisfying the fans as you determined what to keep and what to change or discard?