Articles Tagged Making Films

What a Long, Freaky Head-Trip It’s Been

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“Get on the ground, motherfuckers,” declares Wayne Coyne, directing two somewhat confused kids to lie on their chests in the dingy kitchen of a Vietnamese noodle bar. The lead singer for psychedelic post-punk rock band The Flaming Lips, Coyne isn’t perpetrating a hold-up but is reenacting a 1977 gunpoint robbery he experienced while employed at… Read more »

Effie Brown

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“A hybrid of a hippie commune and capitalism,” is how revered indie film producer Effie Brown describes the goal of her new production company, Duly Noted. “A safe place where filmmakers will be able to go and create, know they’re not going to get screwed over, and at the end of the day be prosperous.”… Read more »

Gregg Araki Gets Mysterious

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Gregg Araki is George Bush’s worst nightmare. In Araki’s parallel cinematic universes, the mainstream is subverted, what the right wing would label “deviant” is normalized, and outcasts and outsiders dominate, calling the shots from the center. His films’ usual thematic mix includes teenagers coming of age, gay sex, violence, drugs, and space aliens. Araki intends… Read more »

This Revolution

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In June 2004, I watched Ted Demme’s inspirational profile of 70s filmmakers, A Decade Under the Influence, which is basically a call-to-arms for indie auteurs to use whatever means they have at their disposal to make movies. Afterward, I just started riffing with a producer friend, Bob Jason, on how the time was ripe for… Read more »

Woman, Thou Art Loosed

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Is America ready for gospel cinema? Independent producer Reuben Cannon thinks so. The former veteran casting director sees a vast, untapped audience similar to that which propelled Mel Gibson’s 2004 religious epic The Passion of the Christ to a multi-million dollar success. Except in Cannon’s version, the untapped audience is made up of several million… Read more »

The Miller’s Daughter

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Rebecca Miller needs to recharge. Well, her phone at least. Plugged into an ancient socket behind me and perched on a café table supporting a plate of hummus and a soy-milk coffee, the little bugger buzzes in its charger twice, prompting Miller to twice interrupt an already brief conversation with whispered instructions to her husband—concerning… Read more »

Is it too late to edit myself out of this film?

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Dear Doc Doctor: I think I made the mistake of putting myself in my film as the inquisitive filmmaker—as a woman, I’m not sure if the role really suits me. What can be done at this stage to save the film? Changing major structural and creative decisions once the film is shot is extremely challenging…. Read more »

Filming Curtis

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When I was a teenager, I took a poetry workshop in Brookline, Massachusetts with Barbara Helfgott Hyett, a wonderful teacher and poet. One day as we leafed through a book of photographs of snowflakes by Wilson Bentley, I was struck by this simple, yet elegant definition of beauty: “A snowflake is beautiful because of its… Read more »

The Anatomy of a Short

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Ten years ago two witty gents from Colorado, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, made a riotous animated short called The Spirit of Christmas (aka Jesus vs. Santa). The film was originally commissioned by Fox executive Brian Graden as a personal holiday card but was ultimately turned down due to its explicit content. It did not… Read more »

The Pay-Off

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In the first few minutes of Kevin Everson’s new film Spicebush, the screen splits into two frames, one showing a brick factory employee at work, the other a hostess announcing the winning numbers for the Ohio lottery. The juxtaposition serves as context, but it’s clear from the rest of the movie that Everson’s interest lies… Read more »