MCN Blogs

By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Redacting out: an NYFF report [UPDATED AGAIN 9:03pm]



[UPDATED 9:03PM] A commenter with a DGA email address writes, “The DGA did NOT rule against Brian De Palma — that statement is entirely false. An arbitrator ruled the company could use redacted photos in the film, rather than the unredacted photos Mr. De Palma wanted to include.” BRIAN DEPALMA’S EARLIEST MOVIES, LIKE THE ANTI-VIETNAM WAR COMEDY GREETINGS, showed an acute awareness of the theater of the streets outside the confines of the 35mm frame. Filmmaker Jamie Stuart drops a line about the possibly contrived yet provocative goings-on at today’s New York Film Festival presser for DePalma’s latest men-in-war/media dissection Redacted: “In the middle of Brian De Palma’s NYFF pc for Redacted earlier today, as he began discussing the film’s use of actual war photographs and their graphic nature, Eamonn Bowles from Magnolia began shouting from the rear of the Walter Reade theater to refute De Palma’s claims that Mark Cuban was trying to, well, redact them from the picture’s release. Then, just as the press conference was coming to a close, producer Jason Kliot rushed the stage and grabbed moderator Jim Hoberman’s mic to offer the crowd his version of this distribution controversy. I was left wondering how spontaneous this all was or whether they knew it would be immediately blogged upon to stoke media attention.” [Consider this an affirmative reply of sorts.] [YouTube link via IFC.]
A look at the video, which I hadn’t seen yesterday, clearly suggests, “Look out, Brian, it’s real!” Eamonn Bowles has kindly offered his perspective on the incident: “there was absolutely no calculation involved at the press conference yesterday. depalma has been on a toot about how we’ve compromised his film, and then he stated publicly at the official nyff press conference that in no uncertain terms mark cuban, for aesthetic reasons, wanted the photos out of the film. i had just arrived and this was one of the first things i heard. in an almost tourette’s like moment, i just blurted out out that it wasn’t true. the thing that really frosts me is that we’ve been incredibly above board and have funded and continue to unapologetically support this incredibly incendiary film. the sole reason that the photos are redacted, is that it is legally indefensible to use someone’s unauthorized photo in a commercial work. any claim to the contrary is either hopelessly naive or willfully false. And any indemnification does not preclude getting sued, and considering the asset bases of cuban and wagner versus depalma, there’s no issue about who’s purses will be attacked (not to mention the presumption of agreeing to the image of one of your loved one’s mutilated body living on in the world wide media). the fact of the matter is, none of the companies that have released depalma’s work in the last 30 years would ever touch this film. and because our company, which has had it’s fair share of controversial, uncompromising films, actually was the one stupid/brave/committed enough to do so, we end up being the evil force trying to shut down a director’s vision. file this under no good deed goes unpunished.” [Photo by Jamie Stuart.]
redacted-jstuart.jpg


[First published 2007-10-08 16:39:09.]

5 Responses to “Redacting out: an NYFF report [UPDATED AGAIN 9:03pm]”

  1. eamonnbowles says:

    there was absolutely no calculation involved at the press conference yesterday. depalma has been on a toot about how we’ve compromised his film, and then he stated publicly at the official nyff press conference that in no uncertain terms mark cuban, for aesthetic reasons, wanted the photos out of the film. i had just arrived and this was one of the first things i heard. in an almost tourette’s like moment, i just blurted out out that it wasn’t true. the thing that really frosts me is that we’ve been incredibly above board and have funded and continue to unapologetically support this incredibly incendiary film. the sole reason that the photos are redacted, is that it is legally indefensible to use someone’s unauthorized photo in a commercial work. any claim to the contrary is either hopelessly naive or willfully false. And any indemnification does not preclude getting sued, and considering the asset bases of cuban and wagner versus depalma, there’s no issue about who’s purses will be attacked
    (not to mention the presumption of agreeing to the image of one of your loved one’s mutilated body living on in the world wide media). the fact of the matter is, none of the companies that have released depalma’s work in the last 30 years would ever touch this film. and because our company, which has had it’s fair share of controversial, uncompromising films, actually was the one stupid/brave/committed enough to do so, we end up being the evil force trying to shut down a director’s vision. file this under no good deed goes unpunished.

  2. eamonnbowles says:

    and this just in – the dga has ruled unequivocally AGAINST depalma on the issue of the photos.

  3. A. Nonymous says:

    The DGA did NOT rule against Brian De Palma — that statement is entirely false. An arbitrator ruled the company could use redacted photos in the film, rather than the unredacted photos Mr. De Palma wanted to include.

  4. JHLECHNER says:

    Let me get that last comment straight. It is “entirely false” that the DGA ruled against De Palma — but it is true that De Palma wanted to use the unredacted photos, and the DGA arbitrator said he couldn’t. I guess it depends on what the meaning of “is” is…

  5. Matt Volk says:

    The (A. Nonymous) General Counsel of the DGA should know what he’s talking about. :)
    He shouldn’t try to post anonymously, though.

Leave a Reply

Movie City Indie

Quote Unquotesee all »

Julian Schnabel: Years ago, I was down there with my cousin’s wife Corky. She was wild — she wore makeup on her legs, and she had a streak in her hair like Yvonne De Carlo in “The Munsters.” She liked to paint. I had overalls on with just a T-shirt and looked like whatever. We were trying to buy a bunch of supplies with my cousin Jesse’s credit card. They looked at the credit card, and then they looked at us and thought maybe we stole the card, so they called Jesse up. He was a doctor who became the head of trauma at St. Vincent’s. They said, “There’s somebody here with this credit card and we want to know if it belongs to you.”

He said, “Well, does the woman have dyed blonde hair and fake eyelashes and look like she stepped out of the backstage of some kind of silent movie, and is she with some guy who has wild hair and is kind of dressed like a bum?”

“Yeah, that’s them.”

“Yeah, that’s my cousin and my wife. It’s okay, they can charge it on my card.”
~ Julian Schnabel Remembers NYC’s Now-Shuttered Pearl Paint

MB Cool. I was really interested in the aerial photography from Enter the Void and how one could understand that conceptually as a POV, while in fact it’s more of an objective view of the city where the story takes place. So it’s an objective and subjective camera at the same time. I know that you’re interested in Kubrick. We’ve talked about that in the past because it’s something that you and I have in common—

GN You’re obsessed with Kubrick, too.

MB Does he still occupy your mind or was he more of an early influence?

GN He was more of an early influence. Kubrick has been my idol my whole life, my own “god.” I was six or seven years old when I saw 2001: A Space Odyssey, and I never felt such cinematic ecstasy. Maybe that’s what brought me to direct movies, to try to compete with that “wizard of Oz” behind the film. So then, years later, I tried to do something in that direction, like many other directors tried to do their own, you know, homage or remake or parody or whatever of 2001. I don’t know if you ever had that movie in mind for your own projects. But in my case, I don’t think about 2001 anymore now. That film was my first “trip” ever. And then I tried my best to reproduce on screen what some drug trips are like. But it’s very hard. For sure, moving images are a better medium than words, but it’s still very far from the real experience. I read that Kubrick said about Lynch’s Eraserhead, that he wished he had made that movie because it was the film he had seen that came closest to the language of nightmares.

Matthew Barney and Gaspar Noé