Here are two recent interviews interviews with filmmakers:
Brad Bird interview
Danny Bole interview
They're both worth reading, here are some highlights of the Danny Bole interview:
In spite of Damian, who's a God-fearing boy, a friend of the saints, and a help to the poor, Millions never becomes 'preachy.' Was that difficult to do?
You can go through the whole filmmaking experience being careful, saying, "I've got to make sure this isn't preachy." But you can't make a film like that. What you do instead is concentrate on the essentials, the positives: the character and the kid playing the character. You're saying that this is the way he sees the world.
If the movie works, it's because you realize that life absolutely is that simple, the way Damian sees it. It's not like we're preaching at people and saying, "Don't you see it's that simple? Why can't you do that? Come on, cough up the money!" We're actually saying that, "When you look back at what you were like [at Damian's age], it was that simple. And that's not a bad thing." That's still us, even though we've moved on into the venal world of survival and competition.
The power of those people with their money will always make sure that the industry delivers to them certain kinds of entertainment. But you have to be very careful that we don't turn the movies into opera, which is like, "They're good for you, they're a bit specialized, and they'll be a bit beyond some of you." Within that, you've got to be, like Scorsese says, "cunning." You've got to smuggle good ideas into something that attracts that person to the Friday or Saturday night film. That way they get a bigger kick out of it than they do from those films you're talking about. That's the job. It's not like you've got to ban the bad films... you've just got to make better films more entertaining.