Robert Rodriguez became a hands-on filmmaker so he could keep his ''favourite hobbies''.

The 'Sin City: A Dame to Kill' director - who also took on the roles of producer, composer, editor and cinematographer on the project - likes to get very involved in making a movie because it allows him to embrace his creativity.

He said: ''My favourite hobbies growing up were photography, drawing, music, making movies. I chose filmmaking because I could still keep all my favourite hobbies under the project of a film.

''So on all my early films, I did everything. And then as I got into the Hollywood system, I thought, 'I don't know why I should give up these things. They're still some of my favourite jobs.' ''

Rodriguez has always tried to make movies on a tight budget - his debut film 'El Mariachi' cost only $7,000 before Columbia Pictures spent $1 million to market it, earning double that when it was released.

He explained to Red Bulletin magazine: ''I was the one who made movies very inexpensively, so they would always turn a profit. I made 'El Mariachi' out of my apartment.

''I thought, 'I don't have to be in Hollywood, they don't care. As long as it shows up on their desk and they can distribute it and make some money off it, they don't care where you make it or how you make it'.

''I think formality went out of the window really quickly when I sold that movie.''